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Question about severe leg, feet, & hand cramping

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  • medit8ionsociety
    We received an email that asked about severe leg, feet, & hand cramping while meditating. In answer to this question: This could be caused by vitamin
    Message 1 of 15 , Jun 26, 2004
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      We received an email that asked about severe leg, feet, & hand
      cramping while meditating. In answer to this question:

      This could be caused by vitamin deficiendies, being in new physical
      positions (like the lotus posture), or many other things, but the
      starting of a new meditation technique - in this case, a pranayama -
      would likely not be the cause. AS I've said many times, your inner
      chatterer has been your master, and you've been it's slave for years,
      and when it sees you gaining control over your own mind, it will fight
      this 'leading to freedom from its slavery' activity by distracting you
      physically, and/or mentally, and/or emotionally to get you to give up
      your efforts. I think there is a 100% occurance rate of this happening
      to meditators at one time or another. If you have a clean bill of
      physical things 'really' not causing these symptoms from your
      physician, I think you have to point to your mind as the culprit. And
      this is a good sign, as it indicates that you are on the right track.
      It's like you have now started sawing through the bars to your prison,
      and they will soon break and never again bar your way to freedom. But
      during the sawing, the sounds of steel being weakened can make quite a
      racket. Persevere!
      Peace and blessings,
      Bob
    • Gene Poole
      ... Hi Bob... Pranayam could indeed trigger muscle cramps and spasms, if the subject is deficient in certain trace minerals; especially, magnesium.
      Message 2 of 15 , Jun 26, 2004
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        >medit8ionsociety <no_reply@y...> wrote:

        > We received an email that asked about severe leg, feet, & hand
        > cramping while meditating. In answer to this question:
        >
        > This could be caused by vitamin deficiendies, being in new physical
        > positions (like the lotus posture), or many other things, but the
        > starting of a new meditation technique - in this case, a pranayama -
        > would likely not be the cause.

        Hi Bob...

        'Pranayam' could indeed trigger
        muscle cramps and spasms, if
        the subject is 'deficient' in certain
        trace minerals; especially, magnesium.

        'Rebirthing' practice which involves
        a lot of prolonged, deliberate breathing
        has been shown to trigger not only
        cramps and spasms, but also other
        deeper and more 'serious' reactions.

        One of my past acquaintances had the
        habit of eating oranges for the purpose
        of 'alkalinizing' the body, as was promoted
        by a famous 'health and diet guru'.

        Little did she know, that the relative pH
        of her urine, which showed increase in
        alkalinity due to eating oranges, actually
        was revealing increased DISCHARGE or
        'wasting' of precious 'alkaline phosphatese'
        minerals. The net effect, was to push her
        into a crisis of health, characterized by all
        of the radical symptoms of magnesium
        deficiency.

        I was able to recognize her 'condition'
        and its cause, because I myself had committed
        a similar blunder, years previous.


        > AS I've said many times, your inner
        > chatterer has been your master, and you've been it's slave for years,
        > and when it sees you gaining control over your own mind, it will fight
        > this 'leading to freedom from its slavery' activity by distracting you
        > physically, and/or mentally, and/or emotionally to get you to give up
        > your efforts. I think there is a 100% occurance rate of this happening
        > to meditators at one time or another. If you have a clean bill of
        > physical things 'really' not causing these symptoms from your
        > physician, I think you have to point to your mind as the culprit. And
        > this is a good sign, as it indicates that you are on the right track.

        A 'perfectly healthy' person (as per medical testing)
        can still be susceptible to acute symptoms, given
        situational (IE, voluntary) circumstances.

        Genuine good health, IMO, will minimize
        the (at least apparent) need for any therapeutic
        or remedial practices, including rigorous
        sessions of meditation.

        I suggest that while we may understand
        that 'all disease is psychosomatic', that
        the deeply interwoven 'cause and effect'
        network, extending back in time and
        mainly lost to conscious memory, makes
        the assignment of 'mental causes' of
        physical symptoms, to be a risky proposition.

        > It's like you have now started sawing through the bars to your prison,
        > and they will soon break and never again bar your way to freedom. But
        > during the sawing, the sounds of steel being weakened can make quite a
        > racket. Persevere!
        > Peace and blessings,
        > Bob

        If a person desires freedom, to go
        directly to the ultimate challenge
        to conditioning, is to attempt to
        reason through the 'cause and effect'
        illusion.

        We live immersed in a vast field of
        'effects' (what we call 'events'), and
        our main, chief superstition is the
        assumption of existence of 'cause'.

        In every 'case' I have investigated,
        it is attachment to 'cause', the fastening
        of blame, the creation of self-as-victim
        of 'cause', which has been the root of
        suffering.

        Even if we 'decide' that events are
        'uncaused', even if we decide that
        there is no actual 'doer', those are
        merely beliefs, superimposed upon
        an infrastructure of assumption of
        cause-and-effect.

        If we have a 'therapeutic goal', it is
        to remove the 'original band-aid'.

        The 'original band-aid' was a remedy
        for a misdiagnosed 'trauma', which was
        in reality, a normal life-event, but
        unrecognized as such by the child-
        awareness. The original band-aid
        was 'gifted' by the parent, and is the
        beginning of the child's adoption of
        the parental style of _compensation_.

        In any event, soaking in a tub of warm
        water which contains about 2 cups of
        dissolved Epsom salts, may prove an
        efficacious remedy for diverse cramps
        and spasms. But running a check on
        any possible wasting of magnesium is
        a good idea.


        ==Gene Poole==
      • Nina
        Hi, Bob, Let s take a step back and look at the difference between meditation and pranayama. For the purposes of this discussion, let s assume that meditation
        Message 3 of 15 , Jun 26, 2004
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          Hi, Bob,

          Let's take a step back and look at the difference
          between meditation and pranayama. For the purposes
          of this discussion, let's assume that meditation
          operates on the level of 'observing'. Pranayama,
          on the other hand, while it may begin with observation
          of the breath, does entail actively altering the
          patterns of respiration in the body. For this reason,
          I would not compare the cramps one may experience
          while practicing pranayama necessarily with those of
          meditation.

          The first thing that comes to my mind in response to
          this emailer's question is: has your practice of
          pranayama lowered the levels of oxygen available
          to your muscles, either by sitting/lying in a position
          that is constricting your circulation or by breathing
          in patterns that reduce the levels of oxygen in your
          body? This is sometimes difficult to know on your
          own, so it is helpful to seek out an experienced teacher
          of pranayama (not just a meditation or hatha yoga teacher)
          and have him/her evaluate your practice.

          One of the most common things I have seen in pranayama
          practice is the tendency to push too early and long into
          an altered pattern such that one's body tenses around the
          breath, or one becomes breathless, spacey, or emotionally
          volatile. It would be unwise, when dealing with pranayama,
          to point to these 'symptoms' as 'noise from my inner
          chatterer' and press forward. These are signs of disruption,
          and the causes are often directly related to how one is
          practicing.

          When you experience disruption in your pranayama practice,
          it may help to back off on the frequency and duration of
          altered breath cycles. For instance, practice the altered
          pattern for 1 or 2 cycles and then return to several cycles
          of normal breathing or until you feel entirely relaxed again.
          At any time, if you feel tension anywhere in your body,
          thoughts or emotions, go back to normal breathing.

          The other issue may indeed be the position used for practicing
          pranayama. For many western folks, sitting in Padmasana for
          pranayama simply isn't productive. Most of us simply don't
          have the degree of hip flexibility necessary for most positions
          that require us to sit on the ground, including Padmasana and
          Sukhasana. The exception might be sitting on a block in Virasana,
          but again, if you wish to reduce your cramping, make sure you
          circulation is in no way impaired. The block must be high enough
          to provide ease to your knees and level support to your pelvis
          so that your central channel and spine can lift into alignment.
          Or you might try reclining pranayama or pranayama while sitting
          in a chair.

          In any case, if your muscle cramps do not resolve with simple
          fixes such as those articulated above, it is advisable to seek
          out an experienced teacher of pranayama to evaluate your practice.
          (Note: a teacher of meditation and/or hatha yoga will not
          necessarily understand the workings of pranayama.)

          Have you read Richard Rosen's book 'The Yoga of Breath'?
          It and David Coulter's section on breathing in 'Anatomy of
          Hatha Yoga: A Manual for Students, Teachers and Practicioners'
          are excellent companions to a pranayama practice. Rosen's
          book gives a practice outline and offers numerous options
          as regards sitting/lying positions for the practice. Coulter's
          book is highly informative as regards the physiological
          workings of pranayama.

          Good luck...
          Nina
        • Nina
          ... After reading what Gene had to say about magnesium, I did a search on oxygen, magnesium and respiration/pranayama. Really, there is a connection between
          Message 4 of 15 , Jun 26, 2004
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            --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com,
            "Gene Poole" <gene_poole@q...> wrote:
            > In any event, soaking in a tub of warm
            > water which contains about 2 cups of
            > dissolved Epsom salts, may prove an
            > efficacious remedy for diverse cramps
            > and spasms. But running a check on
            > any possible wasting of magnesium is
            > a good idea.
            >
            >
            > ==Gene Poole==

            After reading what Gene had to say about
            magnesium, I did a search on oxygen,
            magnesium and respiration/pranayama.
            Really, there is a connection between
            levels of magnesium, alkalinity/acidity
            of the body, oxygen/carbon dioxide
            homeostasis and breathing... which is,
            unfortunately, still beyond me to explain. :)
            Anyway, one thing I read was that one
            way to oxygenate the system is to soak
            in a tub of water with hydrogen peroxide
            added. Interesting... though I still have
            no idea how or if that works, I thought I'd
            toss it into the conversation.

            Nina
          • Andy
            ... wrote: Bob ~ you wrote: If you have a clean bill of physical things really not causing these symptoms from your physician, I think you
            Message 5 of 15 , Jun 26, 2004
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              --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, medit8ionsociety
              <no_reply@y...> wrote:

              Bob ~
              you wrote:

              "If you have a clean bill of physical things 'really' not causing
              these symptoms from your physician, I think you have to point to your
              mind as the culprit. And this is a good sign, as it indicates that
              you are on the right track. It's like you have now started sawing
              through the bars to your prison, and they will soon break and never
              again bar your way to freedom. But during the sawing, the sounds of
              steel being weakened can make quite a racket. Persevere!"


              Underneath (or between) the words above, is the unstated assumption
              that meditation is an appropriate activity for anyone who feels
              compelled to try it. Another possible interpretation of the body's
              pain signals is that the person is not, at that time, ready for what
              may be seen during meditation. Sure, it could be the mind's way of
              derailing what it perceives as an "assault." And certainly, there
              are instances when one may find one's self persevering despite the
              pain. But I would approach this cautiously because maybe Pandora's
              Box is opening too quickly for the person, and the physical pain
              signals are a protection and not a distraction.

              The human mind/psyche is quite complex and there are a variety of
              people for whom meditation is contraindicated (dissociative
              personality disorder, e.g.). Just like a nutrient-packed food such
              as broccoli isn't for everyone (George Bush Sr.), I have a sense that
              meditation isn't for everyone. Some people just don't want to look
              inside in that manner, but they feel compelled to do so. And some
              are stubborn enough to keep at it even though they find it boring or
              useless. So, perhaps the mind/brain enlists the body to dissuade the
              organism via pain. Ironically, a strong sense of self, ego, needs to
              be present to see that the self/ego is illusory (at least in one
              sense). I think it was Jack Engler, in "Transformations
              of Consciousness" who wrote, "You have to first have a self before
              you can lose your self." :-) He goes on to elaborate on this,
              pointing out that a stable sense of self is required to handle some
              of what comes up (and is disassembled) during deep, persistent
              meditation. If the psychological infrastructure is weak, the
              evaporating of the illusion may prove too threatening.

              You can probably tell what's coming: imo, pain plays no role in
              meditation. If there is pain, it is a cry from some part of the
              mind, asking that it be attended to (even if the pain isn't of
              physical origin, although apparently both psychological and physical
              pain originate in the same regions of the brain). Physical pain is a
              message of some sort, and not always a distraction because the person
              is getting "too close" to seeing something. I think Deep Seeing can
              occur without the accompaniment of pain. The meditator just needs to
              be respectful of Its schedule. It "opens" at Its own rate (if it
              opens at all, of course).

              gassho
            • Gene Poole
              ... Think of it this way; Magnesium ions form the electrical environment which enables proper muscle tonus; (although, calcium ions are equally important) and
              Message 6 of 15 , Jun 26, 2004
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                --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, "Nina" <murrkis@y...> wrote:
                > --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com,
                > "Gene Poole" <gene_poole@q...> wrote:
                > > In any event, soaking in a tub of warm
                > > water which contains about 2 cups of
                > > dissolved Epsom salts, may prove an
                > > efficacious remedy for diverse cramps
                > > and spasms. But running a check on
                > > any possible wasting of magnesium is
                > > a good idea.
                > >
                > >
                > > ==Gene Poole==
                >
                > After reading what Gene had to say about
                > magnesium, I did a search on oxygen,
                > magnesium and respiration/pranayama.
                > Really, there is a connection between
                > levels of magnesium, alkalinity/acidity
                > of the body, oxygen/carbon dioxide
                > homeostasis and breathing... which is,
                > unfortunately, still beyond me to explain. :)

                Think of it this way;

                Magnesium ions form the
                electrical environment which
                enables proper muscle tonus;
                (although, calcium ions are
                equally important) and if in
                short supply for any reason,
                symptoms will occur.


                > Anyway, one thing I read was that one
                > way to oxygenate the system is to soak
                > in a tub of water with hydrogen peroxide
                > added. Interesting... though I still have
                > no idea how or if that works, I thought I'd
                > toss it into the conversation.
                >
                > Nina

                BRRRRRZZZZRRRRPP! <--- myth alert klaxon

                Using hydrogen peroxide
                internally or externally does
                NOT 'oxygenate the system'.

                Unfortunately, the proponents
                of hydrogen peroxide use, who
                are involved in MLM promotions
                of expensive 'stabilized oxygen
                beverages', etc, have been stating
                their hype for so long, that it has
                become an oft-repeated myth.

                I repeat; bathe in Epsom salts
                water, to alleviate minor muscle
                cramps. Please do not repeat
                stories which glorify hydrogen
                peroxide as other than an effective
                germicide and/or rocket fuel
                catalyst.


                ==Gene Poole==
              • Bruce Morgen
                ... Gene Poole wrote: In any event, soaking in a tub of warm water which contains about 2 cups of dissolved Epsom salts, may prove an
                Message 7 of 15 , Jun 26, 2004
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                  Gene Poole wrote:
                  --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, "Nina" <murrkis@y...> wrote:
                    
                  --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, 
                  "Gene Poole" <gene_poole@q...> wrote:
                      
                  In any event, soaking in a tub of warm
                  water which contains about 2 cups of
                  dissolved Epsom salts, may prove an
                  efficacious remedy for diverse cramps
                  and spasms. But running a check on
                  any possible wasting of magnesium is
                  a good idea.
                  
                  
                  ==Gene Poole==
                        
                  After reading what Gene had to say about
                  magnesium, I did a search on oxygen,
                  magnesium and respiration/pranayama.
                  Really, there is a connection between
                  levels of magnesium, alkalinity/acidity
                  of the body, oxygen/carbon dioxide
                  homeostasis and breathing... which is,
                  unfortunately, still beyond me to explain. :)
                      
                  Think of it this way;
                  
                  Magnesium ions form the
                  electrical environment which
                  enables proper muscle tonus;
                  (although, calcium ions are
                  equally important) and if in
                  short supply for any reason,
                  symptoms will occur.
                  
                  
                    
                  Anyway, one thing I read was that one
                  way to oxygenate the system is to soak
                  in a tub of water with hydrogen peroxide
                  added. Interesting... though I still have
                  no idea how or if that works, I thought I'd
                  toss it into the conversation.
                  
                  Nina
                      
                  BRRRRRZZZZRRRRPP! <--- myth alert klaxon
                  
                  Using hydrogen peroxide
                  internally or externally does
                  NOT 'oxygenate the system'.
                  
                  Unfortunately, the proponents
                  of hydrogen peroxide use, who
                  are involved in MLM promotions
                  of expensive 'stabilized oxygen
                  beverages', etc, have been stating
                  their hype for so long, that it has
                  become an oft-repeated myth.
                  
                  I repeat; bathe  in  Epsom salts
                  water, to alleviate minor muscle
                  cramps. Please do not repeat
                  stories which glorify hydrogen
                  peroxide as other than an effective
                  germicide and/or rocket fuel 
                  catalyst. 
                  
                  
                    
                  As long as we're striving
                  for factual accuracy here,
                  hydrogen peroxide doesn't
                  act as a "catalyst" but
                  rather as an easier-to-
                  handle (but less efficent)
                  alternative to liquid
                  oxygen in liquid-fueled
                  rocket systems.
                • medit8ionsociety
                  ... Dear Nina, I had told the email originator before posting the query about cramping/etc that I would not disclose their name or the specific technique, but
                  Message 8 of 15 , Jun 26, 2004
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                    --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, "Nina"
                    <murrkis@y...> wrote:
                    > Hi, Bob,
                    >
                    > Let's take a step back and look at the difference
                    > between meditation and pranayama. For the purposes
                    > of this discussion, let's assume that meditation
                    > operates on the level of 'observing'. Pranayama,
                    > on the other hand, while it may begin with observation
                    > of the breath, does entail actively altering the
                    > patterns of respiration in the body.

                    Dear Nina,

                    I had told the email originator before posting the query about
                    cramping/etc that I would not disclose their name or the specific
                    technique, but it is one of the most widely used of all meditations,
                    and the pranayama that was being done involves only observing the
                    breath, and does not "entail actively altering the patterns of
                    respiration in the body." As for some of the rest of your commentary,
                    the classic teaching is in agreement with your advise to "seek out an
                    experienced teacher of pranayama", but it is of course possible that a
                    meditation or hatha yoga teacher is knowledgable about pranayama, and
                    I think you will find them to be few and far between, outside of the
                    meditation/hatha teachers available to most people.

                    Peace and blessings,
                    Bob

                    > For this reason,
                    > I would not compare the cramps one may experience
                    > while practicing pranayama necessarily with those of
                    > meditation.
                    >
                    > The first thing that comes to my mind in response to
                    > this emailer's question is: has your practice of
                    > pranayama lowered the levels of oxygen available
                    > to your muscles, either by sitting/lying in a position
                    > that is constricting your circulation or by breathing
                    > in patterns that reduce the levels of oxygen in your
                    > body? This is sometimes difficult to know on your
                    > own, so it is helpful to seek out an experienced teacher
                    > of pranayama (not just a meditation or hatha yoga teacher)
                    > and have him/her evaluate your practice.
                    >
                    > One of the most common things I have seen in pranayama
                    > practice is the tendency to push too early and long into
                    > an altered pattern such that one's body tenses around the
                    > breath, or one becomes breathless, spacey, or emotionally
                    > volatile. It would be unwise, when dealing with pranayama,
                    > to point to these 'symptoms' as 'noise from my inner
                    > chatterer' and press forward. These are signs of disruption,
                    > and the causes are often directly related to how one is
                    > practicing.
                    >
                    > When you experience disruption in your pranayama practice,
                    > it may help to back off on the frequency and duration of
                    > altered breath cycles. For instance, practice the altered
                    > pattern for 1 or 2 cycles and then return to several cycles
                    > of normal breathing or until you feel entirely relaxed again.
                    > At any time, if you feel tension anywhere in your body,
                    > thoughts or emotions, go back to normal breathing.
                    >
                    > The other issue may indeed be the position used for practicing
                    > pranayama. For many western folks, sitting in Padmasana for
                    > pranayama simply isn't productive. Most of us simply don't
                    > have the degree of hip flexibility necessary for most positions
                    > that require us to sit on the ground, including Padmasana and
                    > Sukhasana. The exception might be sitting on a block in Virasana,
                    > but again, if you wish to reduce your cramping, make sure you
                    > circulation is in no way impaired. The block must be high enough
                    > to provide ease to your knees and level support to your pelvis
                    > so that your central channel and spine can lift into alignment.
                    > Or you might try reclining pranayama or pranayama while sitting
                    > in a chair.
                    >
                    > In any case, if your muscle cramps do not resolve with simple
                    > fixes such as those articulated above, it is advisable to seek
                    > out an experienced teacher of pranayama to evaluate your practice.
                    > (Note: a teacher of meditation and/or hatha yoga will not
                    > necessarily understand the workings of pranayama.)
                    >
                    > Have you read Richard Rosen's book 'The Yoga of Breath'?
                    > It and David Coulter's section on breathing in 'Anatomy of
                    > Hatha Yoga: A Manual for Students, Teachers and Practicioners'
                    > are excellent companions to a pranayama practice. Rosen's
                    > book gives a practice outline and offers numerous options
                    > as regards sitting/lying positions for the practice. Coulter's
                    > book is highly informative as regards the physiological
                    > workings of pranayama.
                    >
                    > Good luck...
                    > Nina
                  • Nina
                    Gene wrote: BRRRRRZZZZRRRRPP!
                    Message 9 of 15 , Jun 26, 2004
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                      Gene wrote:

                      BRRRRRZZZZRRRRPP! <--- myth alert klaxon
                      Using hydrogen peroxide
                      internally or externally does
                      NOT 'oxygenate the system'.
                      Unfortunately, the proponents
                      of hydrogen peroxide use, who
                      are involved in MLM promotions
                      of expensive 'stabilized oxygen
                      beverages', etc, have been stating
                      their hype for so long, that it has
                      become an oft-repeated myth.
                      I repeat; bathe in Epsom salts
                      water, to alleviate minor muscle
                      cramps. Please do not repeat
                      stories which glorify hydrogen
                      peroxide as other than an effective
                      germicide and/or rocket fuel catalyst.

                      Bruce wrote:

                      As long as we're striving
                      for factual accuracy here,
                      hydrogen peroxide doesn't
                      act as a "catalyst" but
                      rather as an easier-to-
                      handle (but less efficent)
                      alternative to liquid
                      oxygen in liquid-fueled
                      rocket systems.

                      Nina wrote:

                      What - are you guys rocket scientists
                      or something?
                    • medit8ionsociety
                      ... big snip ... snip ... Yo Geneji, So you think you could slip in this brilliant sharing of wisdom between advise about magnesium and epsom salt baths and
                      Message 10 of 15 , Jun 26, 2004
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                        --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, "Gene Poole"

                        big snip
                        >
                        > If a person desires freedom, to go
                        > directly to the ultimate challenge
                        > to conditioning, is to attempt to
                        > reason through the 'cause and effect'
                        > illusion.
                        >
                        > We live immersed in a vast field of
                        > 'effects' (what we call 'events'), and
                        > our main, chief superstition is the
                        > assumption of existence of 'cause'.
                        >
                        > In every 'case' I have investigated,
                        > it is attachment to 'cause', the fastening
                        > of blame, the creation of self-as-victim
                        > of 'cause', which has been the root of
                        > suffering.
                        >
                        > Even if we 'decide' that events are
                        > 'uncaused', even if we decide that
                        > there is no actual 'doer', those are
                        > merely beliefs, superimposed upon
                        > an infrastructure of assumption of
                        > cause-and-effect.
                        >
                        > If we have a 'therapeutic goal', it is
                        > to remove the 'original band-aid'.
                        >
                        > The 'original band-aid' was a remedy
                        > for a misdiagnosed 'trauma', which was
                        > in reality, a normal life-event, but
                        > unrecognized as such by the child-
                        > awareness. The original band-aid
                        > was 'gifted' by the parent, and is the
                        > beginning of the child's adoption of
                        > the parental style of _compensation_.
                        >
                        snip
                        >
                        > ==Gene Poole==

                        Yo Geneji,
                        So you think you could slip in this brilliant sharing of wisdom
                        between advise about magnesium and epsom salt baths and think that's
                        all that's gonna be said about it? Wrong oh vast one! You're pointing
                        to the "the creation of self-as-victim of 'cause', which has been the
                        root of suffering." Well, isn't this somewhat acting like a parent
                        applying "the original band-aid"?:-) Please expound on this, so as to
                        avoid our being fastened to some degree of blame for our "adoption of
                        the parental style of _compensation_."
                        Peace and blessings,
                        Bob
                      • Nina
                        ... commentary, ... an ... that a ... and ... Bob, My point was that just because someone teaches meditation and/or hatha yoga does not mean that a person has
                        Message 11 of 15 , Jun 26, 2004
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                          --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, medit8ionsociety
                          <no_reply@y...> wrote:
                          > --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, "Nina"
                          > <murrkis@y...> wrote:
                          > > Hi, Bob,
                          > >
                          > > Let's take a step back and look at the difference
                          > > between meditation and pranayama. For the purposes
                          > > of this discussion, let's assume that meditation
                          > > operates on the level of 'observing'. Pranayama,
                          > > on the other hand, while it may begin with observation
                          > > of the breath, does entail actively altering the
                          > > patterns of respiration in the body.
                          >
                          > Dear Nina,
                          >
                          > I had told the email originator before posting the query about
                          > cramping/etc that I would not disclose their name or the specific
                          > technique, but it is one of the most widely used of all meditations,
                          > and the pranayama that was being done involves only observing the
                          > breath, and does not "entail actively altering the patterns of
                          > respiration in the body." As for some of the rest of your
                          commentary,
                          > the classic teaching is in agreement with your advise to "seek out
                          an
                          > experienced teacher of pranayama", but it is of course possible
                          that a
                          > meditation or hatha yoga teacher is knowledgable about pranayama,
                          and
                          > I think you will find them to be few and far between, outside of the
                          > meditation/hatha teachers available to most people.
                          >
                          > Peace and blessings,
                          > Bob

                          Bob,

                          My point was that just because someone teaches meditation
                          and/or hatha yoga does not mean that a person has a regular,
                          dedicated pranayama practice and the experience that would
                          enable them to make a credible evaluation of someone's
                          practice - particularly if what may be causing a disruption
                          is a matter of fine tuning and not as easy as "relax and
                          breathe" or as dismissive as "it's all in your head."

                          Have a nice evening.

                          Nina
                        • Gene Poole
                          ... Uh-Oh! ... Ha ha... very funny, Bob... Do you have any choice, but to react to your feelings, in the way that you were exampled? And more deeply... do you
                          Message 12 of 15 , Jun 27, 2004
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                            >, medit8ionsociety <no_reply@y...> wrote:
                            > > "Gene Poole" blathered:
                            >
                            > big snip
                            > >
                            > > If a person desires freedom, to go
                            > > directly to the ultimate challenge
                            > > to conditioning, is to attempt to
                            > > reason through the 'cause and effect'
                            > > illusion.
                            > >
                            > > We live immersed in a vast field of
                            > > 'effects' (what we call 'events'), and
                            > > our main, chief superstition is the
                            > > assumption of existence of 'cause'.
                            > >
                            > > In every 'case' I have investigated,
                            > > it is attachment to 'cause', the fastening
                            > > of blame, the creation of self-as-victim
                            > > of 'cause', which has been the root of
                            > > suffering.
                            > >
                            > > Even if we 'decide' that events are
                            > > 'uncaused', even if we decide that
                            > > there is no actual 'doer', those are
                            > > merely beliefs, superimposed upon
                            > > an infrastructure of assumption of
                            > > cause-and-effect.
                            > >
                            > > If we have a 'therapeutic goal', it is
                            > > to remove the 'original band-aid'.
                            > >
                            > > The 'original band-aid' was a remedy
                            > > for a misdiagnosed 'trauma', which was
                            > > in reality, a normal life-event, but
                            > > unrecognized as such by the child-
                            > > awareness. The original band-aid
                            > > was 'gifted' by the parent, and is the
                            > > beginning of the child's adoption of
                            > > the parental style of _compensation_.
                            > >
                            > snip
                            > >
                            > > ==Gene Poole==
                            >
                            > Yo Geneji,
                            > So you think you could slip in this brilliant sharing of wisdom
                            > between advise about magnesium and epsom salt baths and think that's
                            > all that's gonna be said about it? Wrong oh vast one!

                            Uh-Oh!


                            > You're pointing
                            > to the "the creation of self-as-victim of 'cause', which has been the
                            > root of suffering." Well, isn't this somewhat acting like a parent
                            > applying "the original band-aid"?:-) Please expound on this, so as to
                            > avoid our being fastened to some degree of blame for our "adoption of
                            > the parental style of _compensation_."
                            > Peace and blessings,
                            > Bob

                            Ha ha... very funny, Bob...

                            Do you have any choice, but to react
                            to your feelings, in the way that you
                            were exampled?

                            And more deeply... do you have any
                            choice, but to have those feelings,
                            based as they are, on the very values
                            which formed the core of the parental
                            personality?

                            And did your parents have any choice,
                            about how they would feel, when... and
                            how they would compensate for those
                            feelings?

                            Just whose (ancient) program is running
                            this show, anyhow? Is the family way,
                            all the way back?

                            The consistent factors in all of this, are
                            involving our dire need to be successful
                            socially; how to 'act' so as to be included,
                            not excluded.

                            We have taken up an ancient burden we
                            do not understand, and carry it as our
                            badge of social belonging.

                            The 'family' and 'tribe' are the strongest
                            social units; those can make or break an
                            individual.

                            If a family or tribe is collectively 'sick',
                            and a child fails to successfully 'adapt'
                            to the sickness, the sick tribe/family will
                            eject that child, and define his as 'sick'.

                            We see a lot of tribal sickness these days;
                            and we can only cheer the child, who cannot
                            adapt.

                            Bob, the 'mind' is like a vase of roses; how
                            they are arranged, varies from family to tribe
                            to culture. What we need to keep in mind, is that
                            given the vase and the roses, we can adopt any
                            arrangement we choose.

                            Problem is, that if a strong wind occurs, the roses
                            return to their 'default' config, which was set in the
                            early days of family life.


                            ==Gene Poole==
                          • medit8ionsociety
                            ... Yo Geneji, Great stuff, and right on. I see real life examples of what you point to daily as I work with behavior-problem young girls, and see the way
                            Message 13 of 15 , Jun 27, 2004
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                              --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com, "Gene Poole"
                              <gene_poole@q...> wrote:
                              > >, medit8ionsociety <no_reply@y...> wrote:
                              > > > "Gene Poole" blathered:
                              > >
                              > > big snip
                              > > >
                              > > > If a person desires freedom, to go
                              > > > directly to the ultimate challenge
                              > > > to conditioning, is to attempt to
                              > > > reason through the 'cause and effect'
                              > > > illusion.
                              > > >
                              > > > We live immersed in a vast field of
                              > > > 'effects' (what we call 'events'), and
                              > > > our main, chief superstition is the
                              > > > assumption of existence of 'cause'.
                              > > >
                              > > > In every 'case' I have investigated,
                              > > > it is attachment to 'cause', the fastening
                              > > > of blame, the creation of self-as-victim
                              > > > of 'cause', which has been the root of
                              > > > suffering.
                              > > >
                              > > > Even if we 'decide' that events are
                              > > > 'uncaused', even if we decide that
                              > > > there is no actual 'doer', those are
                              > > > merely beliefs, superimposed upon
                              > > > an infrastructure of assumption of
                              > > > cause-and-effect.
                              > > >
                              > > > If we have a 'therapeutic goal', it is
                              > > > to remove the 'original band-aid'.
                              > > >
                              > > > The 'original band-aid' was a remedy
                              > > > for a misdiagnosed 'trauma', which was
                              > > > in reality, a normal life-event, but
                              > > > unrecognized as such by the child-
                              > > > awareness. The original band-aid
                              > > > was 'gifted' by the parent, and is the
                              > > > beginning of the child's adoption of
                              > > > the parental style of _compensation_.
                              > > >
                              > > snip
                              > > >
                              > > > ==Gene Poole==
                              > >
                              > > Yo Geneji,
                              > > So you think you could slip in this brilliant sharing of wisdom
                              > > between advise about magnesium and epsom salt baths and think that's
                              > > all that's gonna be said about it? Wrong oh vast one!
                              >
                              > Uh-Oh!
                              >
                              >
                              > > You're pointing
                              > > to the "the creation of self-as-victim of 'cause', which has been the
                              > > root of suffering." Well, isn't this somewhat acting like a parent
                              > > applying "the original band-aid"?:-) Please expound on this, so as to
                              > > avoid our being fastened to some degree of blame for our "adoption of
                              > > the parental style of _compensation_."
                              > > Peace and blessings,
                              > > Bob
                              >
                              > Ha ha... very funny, Bob...
                              >
                              > Do you have any choice, but to react
                              > to your feelings, in the way that you
                              > were exampled?
                              >
                              > And more deeply... do you have any
                              > choice, but to have those feelings,
                              > based as they are, on the very values
                              > which formed the core of the parental
                              > personality?
                              >
                              > And did your parents have any choice,
                              > about how they would feel, when... and
                              > how they would compensate for those
                              > feelings?
                              >
                              > Just whose (ancient) program is running
                              > this show, anyhow? Is the family way,
                              > all the way back?
                              >
                              > The consistent factors in all of this, are
                              > involving our dire need to be successful
                              > socially; how to 'act' so as to be included,
                              > not excluded.
                              >
                              > We have taken up an ancient burden we
                              > do not understand, and carry it as our
                              > badge of social belonging.
                              >
                              > The 'family' and 'tribe' are the strongest
                              > social units; those can make or break an
                              > individual.
                              >
                              > If a family or tribe is collectively 'sick',
                              > and a child fails to successfully 'adapt'
                              > to the sickness, the sick tribe/family will
                              > eject that child, and define his as 'sick'.
                              >
                              > We see a lot of tribal sickness these days;
                              > and we can only cheer the child, who cannot
                              > adapt.
                              >
                              > Bob, the 'mind' is like a vase of roses; how
                              > they are arranged, varies from family to tribe
                              > to culture. What we need to keep in mind, is that
                              > given the vase and the roses, we can adopt any
                              > arrangement we choose.
                              >
                              > Problem is, that if a strong wind occurs, the roses
                              > return to their 'default' config, which was set in the
                              > early days of family life.
                              >
                              >
                              > ==Gene Poole==

                              Yo Geneji,
                              Great stuff, and right on. I see "real life" examples of what you
                              point to daily as I work with "behavior-problem" young girls, and see
                              the way sickness and anti-social traits/behaviors are mimiced through
                              generations. Grandma was an asthmatic, and so is Mama, so the child
                              believes and insists she is, even though there are no signs or
                              symptoms whatsoever. And G-mom hit her kid, and Mama hit our client,
                              and she answers situations by hitting first and often. A nice thing I
                              do see is that sometimes the arrangement of flowers can be changed and
                              the innate beauty can appear. But we have a society that insists all
                              too often that after the flowers have begun to thrive, on returning
                              the children to the same family and conditions that emphasized the
                              thorns on the stems and not the wonderful aromas and beauty that have
                              been achieved. And yes, "it is attachment to 'cause', the fastening of
                              blame, the creation of self-as-victim as 'cause', ... (that) has been
                              the root of suffering". And in the majority of cases, soon after
                              returning to the original biological and environmental influences, the
                              flowers wither and rot. And for our girls, too often, a life of shame,
                              degradation and abuse continues.
                              Peace and blessings,
                              Bob
                            • Nina
                              ... The mind boggles at the conversations to be had, in which one repeatedly replaces My Family Way for I . How could one possibly remain attached to one s
                              Message 14 of 15 , Jun 27, 2004
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                                --- In meditationsocietyofamerica@yahoogroups.com,
                                "Gene Poole" <gene_poole@q...> wrote:

                                > Do you have any choice, but to react
                                > to your feelings, in the way that you
                                > were exampled?
                                >
                                > And more deeply... do you have any
                                > choice, but to have those feelings,
                                > based as they are, on the very values
                                > which formed the core of the parental
                                > personality?
                                >
                                > And did your parents have any choice,
                                > about how they would feel, when... and
                                > how they would compensate for those
                                > feelings?
                                >
                                > Just whose (ancient) program is running
                                > this show, anyhow? Is the family way,
                                > all the way back?

                                The mind boggles at the conversations to be had,
                                in which one repeatedly replaces "My Family Way"
                                for "I". How could one possibly remain attached
                                to one's identity when it is referenced in such a way?
                                Beyond knowing that it exists and recognizing its
                                operation, is there any hope of moving beyond
                                "My Family Way"? It is doubtful, in the way that
                                it is 'impossible' to move beyond the ever fragmenting
                                bounds of a fractal. Who is to say that moving
                                beyond "My Family Way" is not simply... part of
                                "My Family Way"?

                                Nina
                              • tom_flou
                                Hi here is a physoilogical view. If Pranayam is practiced as paying attention to the breathing without changing its natural rhythm in any way, this part can
                                Message 15 of 15 , Jun 27, 2004
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                                  Hi here is a physoilogical view.

                                  If Pranayam is practiced as paying attention to the breathing
                                  without changing its natural rhythm in any way, this part can hardly
                                  have any adverse physiological effects.
                                  But if the breathing is forced or reduced and so the natural self-
                                  regulation of this very complicated and delicate process is
                                  tampered with, the consequences can be rather knowledgeable.
                                  The resting breath rate is about 15/min. securing a oxygen density
                                  in the tissues at close to 100%
                                  If breath rate is increased (Hyperventilation) it does not affect
                                  the oxygen tension much, but it does markedly decrease the CO2
                                  tension.
                                  This causes an increase in free hydrogen ions and thus a lowering of
                                  the pH of the blood and subsequently the body fluids. (Respiratory
                                  acidosis) This has rather immediate and noticeable effects on the
                                  body involved. Some symptoms are dizziness, confusion. (Even out of
                                  body experiences and hallucinations)
                                  As a result of the lowering pH of the blood, even a lowering of
                                  calcium occurs, resulting in numbness and tingling in hands, arms
                                  and in the face, spasms or cramps of hands and feet.
                                  It has bees suggested here to breathe deeply at a rate of 60/min.
                                  This will in a short time result in such a respiratory acidosis of
                                  the body. Possibly with any number of the above mentioned symptoms
                                  emerging. It is not a serious medical condition, as the person
                                  affected if he does not stop, will finally pass out, thereby
                                  automatically returning his breathing to normal and correcting the
                                  offset blood chemistry.
                                  Hyperventilation is an integral part of most panic disorders,
                                  all of these symptoms giving the sufferer "proof" that something is
                                  seriously wrong in the body.
                                  The condition is treated with reassurance and if needed, placing a
                                  plastic bag over the mouth and nose so the CO2 can reenter the body.

                                  Magnesium deficiency is of rare clinical relevance.

                                  Dietary or external applications has at best a very limited effect.

                                  Cheers

                                  Tom
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