Escapist entertainment as a guide


One of the precepts from the Center for Sacred Sciences is to not overindulge in escapist entertainments. It is a very helpful precept since it brings our attention to when we do just that, and also invites in the question of why and what the dynamics are around it.

What am I trying to escape? What happens when I try to escape in this way? What happens if I meet what I am trying to escape, and more wholeheartedly allow the experience of it as it is?

And some other questions I have found useful for myself…

Is it true that what I am seeking is not already here? (From Adyashanti.)

What is/are the belief(s) behind the impulse to escape? And then take these to inquiry: What happens when I hold onto that belief? Who am I without it, here and now? How would I live my life differently without that belief? What are the truths in its turnarounds? (From Byron Katie.)

And also, while I am indulging in escapist entertainment, allow experience and notice beliefs.

I can notice whatever experiences and emotions comes up from what I am reading/watching/listening to, and see what happens when I resist them (even subtly), and what happens when I am with them and allow them more wholeheartedly.

And I can notice beliefs coming up about what I am watching/reading/listening to, and take these to inquiry later.

In this way, escapist entertainment can become a full fledged practice in itself. Still as entertaining, and maybe more juicy.

Trigger: This article on BBC.

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