Abandon what is unskillful. One can abandon the unskilfulll. If it were not possible, I would not ask you to do it. If this abandoning of the unskillful would bring harm and suffering, I would not ask you to abandon it. but as is brings benefit and happiness, therefore I say, abandon what is unskillful.
~ Gautama Buddha (563 BC 483 BC age:80)
Do not believe in anything simply because you have heard it.
Do not believe in traditions because they have been handed down for many generations.
Do not believe in anything because it is spoken and rumoured by many.
Do not believe in anything simply because it is written in your religious books.
Do not believe anything merely on the authority of your teachers and elders.
But after observation and analysis, when you find that anything agrees with reason and is conducive to the good and benefit of one and all, then accept it and live up to it.
~ Gautama Buddha (563 BC 483 BC age:80)
In living love, there is nothing to believe. Instead there are experiments or techniques called methods, you can try to reduce your suffering.
Suffering is created in your mind when your brain interprets and analyses the patterns in the billions of nerve impulses coming into your brain. Outside events do not directly cause suffering. Your mind is programmed to create pain when it sees certain patterns in the neuron firings. You need two things to create suffering:
You are already skilled in trying to line the world up the way you want, thus avoiding painful stimuli. Go right on doing that. However, in addition, you want to get rid of your painful addictive programming that creates pain whenever the universe does not conform to your liking. That programming is 100% under your control; the outside world is not.
Living Love uses the term addiction in a broader sense than being addicted to a drug. You can be addicted to a person. You can even be addicted to having your eggs cooked in a certain way. Anything you tell yourself you must (or must not) have before you can be happy, is an addiction. Whenever an addiction is not satisfied, the brain punishes itself by creating pain, physical or emotional. "addictions are the only cause of suffering" because you can’t suffer without an addictive demand that the world be other than it is.
In contrast, when a preference is unsatisfied, you don’t make yourself unhappy. For example, you might happily eat chocolate ice cream when the restaurant runs out of your preferred favourite, strawberry.
With preferences we continue to try to get the world of people and events to conform to our desires, but we don’t upset ourselves when it does not. Ironically, we are more effective at making changes when we operate from preferences than from addictions.
Don’t confuse addiction with attraction.
You have some options:
Your ego will try to confuse you about the definitions of addiction and preference. An addiction is not just wanting something you want very much. It is something you punish yourself with negative emotions when you don’t get it. You might not even like it, e.g. cigarettes.
Having a preference does not mean you don’t care, that you have given up trying to get what you want. With a preference, you can still put 100% effort into getting what you want. You just don’t beat yourself with negative emotions while to you are waiting to succeed.
Scientists have found that stress is the #1 cause of aging. Most techniques to deal with stress help you to temporarily distract yourself from thinking about the stressful situation. Living Love teaches you to think about stressful situation in ways that no longer trigger stress.
With a preference:
Your mind will try to trick you into thinking you have to give up what you want, rather than giving up making yourself upset when you don’t get what you want.
People unfamiliar with Living Love might imagine using it would turn you into a doormat. The world would walk all over you if you gave up your addictions. Strange as it sounds, the reverse is true. You become more powerful and effective as you shed your addictions. Your power is based on love not bullying. People naturally oppose bullies; people naturally go along with those who love them. With Living Love, your behaviour does not have to change at all, though you might choose to behave in a mellower way. All that has to change is your internal emotional experience.
The classic five Living Love methods for upleveling addictions to preferences or getting rid of them are described in the late Ken Keyes’ book
|recommend book⇒Handbook to Higher Consciousness|
|by||Ken Keyes Jr.||978-0-9600688-8-3||paperback|
|birth||1921-01-19 1995-12-20 age:74||978-0-9600688-9-0||hardcover|
|Ken’s classic. This is by far his best selling book. You can read part of it online.|
|Greyed out stores probably do not have the item in stock. Try looking for it with a bookfinder.|
You are better off with preferences than addictions. Consider the following scenarios:
|Dealing with something you don’t want|
|Someone is criticising you||Someone is not criticising you|
|with an addiction||You feel angry, hurt, resentful etc.||You may not suffer, but then again you may worry that someone soon will criticise you.|
|with a preference||You feel neutral||You feel neutral|
|Dealing with not getting what you want|
|X says yes when you ask for sex.||X says no when you ask for sex.|
|with an addiction||You may feel great, but then again you may worry that X did not really mean it, or that X will say no next time.||You feel disappointed, frustrated, angry, hurt ashamed etc.|
|with a preference||You feel elated.||You feel neutral|
To the novice Living Lover, it is debatable whether it would be a Good Thing™ to get rid of most of one’s addictions. Until you decide firmly that it is, you are not going to use the methods with much enthusiasm. The best place to hash out these reservations is at a workshop.
Perhaps you would like to join us for the 2002-09 Mendip Hills Workshop in England.
Living Love has nothing to say about ethics, what is right and wrong. You must get that from some other source. Love everyone unconditionally, including yourself is a little vague when it comes time to make sound ethical choices.
As far as I know, the Living Love Methods are compatible with most other techniques/spiritual paths/religions. You don’t have to give up your current practices.
This is not pie in the sky. If you are diligent, you should see results within the first week of using the methods. If you don’t, try some other path more suited to you. Living Love is primarily for analytical, science-loving people, often atheist or agnostic.
Every addiction you reprogram instantly and permanently lifts a burden of suffering. You will almost certainly keep some addictions right to your grave, but the fewer you carry, the less you will suffer. When you use the methods reasonably consistently, life just gradually gets better and better as you get older. I tell you this, not only from theory, but also from my own personal experience and the experiences of hundreds of other people.
Big addictions take years of patient grinding away. However, the results are well worth the effort. You might say to yourself, but it may take 20 years to grind off this monster addiction. But then, where would you be in 20 years if you don’t use the methods (or some other techniques with the same aim)? — stuck suffering the same as you are now!
Living Love in the abstract tends to make perfect sense. When it comes time to apply it to a particular troublesome life situation, then it sometimes seems problematic, because your addictions blind you. You can’t absorb it all in one reading. You have to read it again and again in the contexts of different life problems you are working on.
Ten thousand flowers in spring, the moon in autumn,
A cool breeze in summer, snow in winter —
If your mind is not clouded by unnecessary things,
this is the best season of your life.
~ Wu-Men (862 AD 949 AD age:87), circa 1180-1230
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