Philosophical Meditation – Free Ebook

our minds give us trouble and one of the leading ways that people deal with them nowadays is through mindfulness or meditation processes whereby we quieten our thoughts empty our minds and focus on just a few things at a time like the rustle of leaves or the flow of water at the school of life we want to put forward an alternative or rather a complementary idea we’ve devised technique based not on Eastern thought but on ideas that come down to us through the Western philosophical tradition and we’ve called it philosophical meditation the basic idea behind philosophical meditation comes from the idea that a lot of the trouble in our mind comes from thoughts that haven’t been properly cleaned up or ordered muddled or unfocused thoughts are constantly swirling around our minds worrying us on Julie because we don’t understand their true nature and we can’t grasp them properly sometimes we feel the need to sort of head set or gas on top of things but it’s not quite clear how we might do this or it’s not very much discussed this is what philosophical meditation is designed for it’s a tool and an occasion for clearing up our minds the first priority is to set aside a bit of time ideally about 20 minutes every couple of days you should sit probably in bed either early in the morning or late at night with a pad of paper and you’re going to ask yourself a set some very simple questions firstly what am I currently anxious about secondly who am I upset with and why and thirdly what am I currently excited or ambitious about at first when asked to respond to these rather large questions the mind tends to be really inarticulate and a bit scared generally something comes to mind but you can’t quite tell what it is it might be a word a mental image or a place that doesn’t matter write it down anyway and don’t worry too much about its ultimate sense relax entirely and don’t censor anything so under what am i anxious about I’m going to write down a few things and it will probably be nonsense to anybody else but that doesn’t matter I don’t really understand what it means either but the point is to get the inner censor out of the way and just get something down keep scouring the mind for stray wisps of anxious thoughts wait quietly and catch them like butterflies in a net when you’ve got them all in begin the second phase which is analysis you see anxiety is a signal but a garbled and unclear signal about what one part of the brain perceives off as danger so that’s why you need to take time to interpret these anxious signals and to do this you can ask yourself a series of six simple questions to every one of these anxious thoughts tell the story of the coming anxious period in great detail and say exactly what you imagine might go wrong what would happen to you if it did all go wrong reflect on this how might you still be okay even if the worst happened how would the person you’d like to be ideally deal with this situation what previous situations does this remind you of what helped in the past now time to move on to the second part of the philosophical meditation the bit where you ask Who am I upset with and why the theory here is that we don’t often allow ourselves to analyze the hurts that we receive from other people and this happens everyday from a misplaced sense of stoicism and bravery we pay for this dearly for undigested hurts generate bitterness confusion and misdirected aggression so take what you’ve written and ask yourself the six following questions retell yourself the upsetting incident in great detail as if you are retelling it to a very kind and patient friend what good part of yourself feels in danger how might a nice person have ended up doing this thing if they won’t actively mean is there another explanation for the hurt they’ve caused you what are you afraid might happen if this were to continue and if you had to pin down an incident in the past that this somehow reminds you of what was that and can you see a pattern if this had happened to a friend how might you now advise them next comes ambition and excitement and by this we mean a range of positive emotions tremors of interest tentative enthusiasms delights and so on all these things that are just hovering on the edge of consciousness and are extremely calming to bring into focus there are six questions here to describe your excitement as if to a sympathetic interested friend you need to change your life in certain ways so what would it be like to change your life in light of this this excitement holds a clue to what’s missing in your life what might be missing if this thing could talk what might it tell you if this thing could try to change your life what changes might it advise and if other parts of your life were like this what might they be like answering these questions starts the vital work of decoding the jumbled mess that’s usually clogging up our minds and the longer we’ve gone without doing one of these mental audits the more there will be to go through philosophical meditation doesn’t magically solve our problems but it hugely helps us by creating an occasion where we can identify our thoughts and put them into some kind of order fears resentments and hopes become easier to name we’re less scared of the contents of our own minds and hence were easier to live with and around if you want to practice philosophical meditation more frequently we’ve prepared a little guide to help you the link is below the screen you

Leave a Reply