Inquiry: I need to escape experience

 

I need to escape my experience.

I need to escape certain experiences.

I need to avoid discomfort/suffering.

I need to escape what I am experiencing.

True?

Hm. It certainly feels that way, sometimes.

Sure?

No. It’s just a thought, a feeling.

What happens when I take it to be true?

I feel I need to escape my experience.

I try to escape my experience.

I use different strategies for escaping experience.

(a) I try to avoid whatever is unpleasant. I try to avoid situations triggering it.

(b) I try to distract myself from it. I bring attention to something else.

I talk to friends, do something, read, watch a movie, go for a walk, listen to a podcast etc.

Any activity can serve as a distraction.

(c) I try to change the experience.

I do inquiry, pray, meditate etc. – all to try to change the experience, to change the state.

What do I hope to get out of it?

Comfort. A sense of safety.

What do I actually get out of it?

Temporary escape at best.

–> Continued discomfort – from trying to escape, from knowing I can’t really escape.

–> The process of trying to escape is in itself uncomfortable.

I tell myself something is wrong. Something needs to change for me to be OK.

And that’s inherently uncomfortable.

It comes from a belief, and from trying to escape meeting the belief and the fear it creates.

What would be a better strategy?

Hm. To meet and befriend what is.

Meet it with receptivity, curiosity.

When I do this, I find what I a looking for.

I find a release. A sense of coming home.

Release from needing to escape what’s here.

Who would I be without the belief – I need to escape experience?

Curious. Receptive.

–> Not escaping what’s here.

Turnarounds

I don’t need to escape experience.

Hm. No, it’s here.

Life doesn’t think I need to escape it.

When I have met experienced in the past, it’s been OK.

When I ask myself if the experience is OK, I have found it is.

I need to meet experience.

Yes. When I do that right now, it feels good. It feels right.

There is a sense of coming home. A relief from being caught up in trying to escape it.

My thinking needs to avoid experience.

Yes, that’s where the need to escape experience is located.

I believe I need to escape experience, so think, feel and act as if it’s true.

I get caught up in that belief. I get caught up in the worldview of that belief.

– o –

Basic dynamics

When I believe I need to escape experience, I may be able to do so partially and for a while.

I may distract myself.

I may find tools and techniques that change my state and experience for a while.

But I cannot control experience. Experiences come and go. They live their own life.

–> And equally important, believing that I need to change my experience is uncomfortable in itself.

I get myself into escape mode. I keep trying to run from what’s here.

I tell myself certain experiences are wrong. I tell myself reality is wrong.

And that is inherently uncomfortable.

– o –

Pointers

Can I be with this experience?

Is it OK? Is this experience OK?

What happens if I allow this experience as it is?

How would it be if I couldn’t escape? If there were no escape?

Is it possible to escape this experience? What happens if I don’t?

Can I be with this experience, including the resistance?

– o –

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