PLAY YOUR EMOTIONS — Don’t Let Them Play You

How do you feel right now?

Are you serene, happy, agitated, relaxed, agitated, tense, depressed, —-or some variation or combination  of all of the above? Notice how these feelings may change from moment to moment. What is behind these floating, transforming feelings?  Our minds.

In truth,  the objective events in our lives most likely haven't changed as rapidly our our feelings. So logically we are being "played" by our minds. Our moment to moment feelings reflect our mind's floating and everchanging interaction with its own thoughts.

The first step in dealing with our emotions and feelings is to recognize their source–our minds. One powerful tool by which we can accomplish this realization is through meditation. It simply and elegantly demonstrates a tool for dissociating ourselves from our feelings.

Now this is not an attempt to reject our feelings or to escape them. It is a tool for awareness. It allows our minds to understand that our higher Self is not those thoughts or emotions. We put ourselves into the position of the observer, at least during our meditation time. This is not an attempt to escape from the reality of our lives.  It is an exercise in metaphysical exploration of who we truly are.  This reflects the distinction between "nonattachment" and detachment.  The former is a Buddhist term to describe a the goal of consciousness, the later is an unhealthy form of escapism.

 We understand that we will most likely return to our ordinary state of consciousness in which we become those fleeting and chaotic thoughts and feelings. But for a few moments we have some insight which may help us throughout our day. With practice we may begin to recognize when our feelings change during our day and seek to understand what is behind this change.

We may recognize that we have received some information from the outside world which pleases or upsets us. However, we may just as often be unaware of what triggers these change in feelings. It may be that we have entered a pattern of flow, when our plans seem to be unfolding, when a blockage of some sorts is released.

A true challenge involves seeking to back away from the reflexive, reactive feelings  and seek a state of relative serenity. Meditation may the training tool to help us achieve a bit of control.

Clearly this is not easy to accomplish.  And I am not advocating remaining passive in the face of unfair treatment.  Reasonable and rational responses to being mistreated or wronged is always necessary.  But the key is to balance the appropriate response with a return to a serene mental state.  Our emotions can continue to "play" us even when doing so is not only unproductive but actually counterproductive.  Persistent anger, anxiety and frustration can result in negative physical as well as mental consequences.

But at the very least realizing how our mind creates our feelings  offers more insight into the nature of who we are and offers some remedy for healing.

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