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 Satsang Cafe - General Discussions on AYP
 Cannabis use & overcoming Tamas
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Hayley

United Kingdom
13 Posts

Posted - Sep 05 2019 :  06:46:27 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Message
Hi
I have just begun studying & practising yoga and so I am a newbie.
For too many years I used cannabis & alcohol to escape an unhappy childhood which led to an unhappy life. For a long time I clung to these things with all the excuses as a crutch as I believed they helped me cope. In the past year after receiving some excellent counselling I have begun to realize what a hindrance they are and have been to my life.
After studying the gunas I realize that I have been led into tamas because of these addictions. This has led to me becoming self-divided as I deeply yearn for more and have done all my life. I despise the part of me that feels low and heavy and just want to escape from this It's only recently that I have began to understand that more is possible and it is not just an empty dream. I feel like the veil is being gradually lifted.
I have stopped smoking and drinking but am finding it a struggle to lift myself from this state and the temptation to smoke and drink.
I read too much and often become overwhelmed with all the different techniques available.
What I would like to know is if there is any advice anyone can offer for some simple beginner practices I could do to get me out of this place I feel trapped in.
Thank you for any help or advice you can give.

jusmail

India
482 Posts

Posted - Sep 05 2019 :  08:28:06 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Welcome to the forum. Your desire will set you free. Everything in moderation is the key, even withdrawal from undesirable habits. So let the journey begin. Read the lessons, and self-pace as needed.

Good tidings!
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Hayley

United Kingdom
13 Posts

Posted - Sep 05 2019 :  10:02:05 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Thank you Jusmail
You are right about the moderation, especially withdrawals as I stopped everything at once and have been having some unpleasant side effects that are hindering progress. There is a group near me that helps with addictions that I am going to join so maybe that will help.
I turned 50 this year and kept thinking it is too late for me to change, but I guess it's never too late.
Yes the temptation is to jump in and stop everything and practice hard to make up for lost time. But I don't think that is the answer either. Desperation probably doesn't make a good basis for yoga practice.
I have been reading the lessons and started doing the meditation with the mantra and also the pranayama spinal breathing. It is certainly helping to keep me calm and focused.
Every time I want a drink or smoke I am trying to just sit quiet with myself with calm breathing and the mantra. The mantra also helps when my thoughts start to become negative.
I guess it's a slow process, but better late than never.
I feel that I am starting to look at things a lot differently and oddly enough all the bad things that have happened in the past seem to be making sense and have a reason and have led me here.
Isn't it strange how despair leads us to hope and bad times lead us to look for something better.
Thank you for your welcome and kind words of advice.
Sincere regards
Hayley
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Dogboy

USA
1646 Posts

Posted - Sep 05 2019 :  11:33:50 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
quote:
Every time I want a drink or smoke I am trying to just sit quiet with myself with calm breathing and the mantra. The mantra also helps when my thoughts start to become negative.
I guess it's a slow process, but better late than never.


This is exactly the process to take, to be in it and then let it go. This slowly thaws the desire. It took years of attachment to your vices, most likely it won’t take years to undo, but it will take time, so cut yourself some slack .

quote:
This has led to me becoming self-divided as I deeply yearn for more and have done all my life. I despise the part of me that feels low and heavy and just want to escape from this It's only recently that I have began to understand that more is possible and it is not just an empty dream. I feel like the veil is being gradually lifted.


Have this yearning bring you to your practice each day. Every time you practice you are on the path to a better you.

Welcome to the forum
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Hayley

United Kingdom
13 Posts

Posted - Sep 05 2019 :  3:37:57 PM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Thank you Dogboy, that is very inspiring,
it's not easy, but I am getting a lot of support here so I
am making the most of it and keeping myself busy and focusing on my practice.
I have a tendency to get overwhelmed and reach for.... what I don't want to reach for (I used to say 'what I shouldn't be reaching for') so I am keeping it simple and just practising the meditation and spinal breathing gently, to try to get a feel of tracing a path, as when I started putting my awareness on my body there were parts of it I couldn't feel or sense, including my heart, and that scared me! So I am taking it slowly.
Thank you for your encouragement and warm welcome
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BlueRaincoat

United Kingdom
1516 Posts

Posted - Sep 06 2019 :  03:26:32 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Welcome to AYP Hayley!
You are doing great
Good luck
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SeySorciere

Seychelles
1178 Posts

Posted - Sep 06 2019 :  05:33:46 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Dear Hayley,


It takes courage (and sometimes desperation) to change. You're doing good and we are all lucky to have resources like AYP at hand. I know you want to reach a place beyond temptation/ compulsion fast but there is a due process. So a few words of caution. Deep meditation and spinal breathing pranayama are simply but very powerful techniques. Yogani recommends time limits on doing these: SBP for 10 mins followed by DM for 20 mins. They are not techniques that can be performed all day long, anytime we feel the need to centre. You will suffer consequences. So my advice is still to stick to 2x daily sittings for the recommended times, not more. Then go out and enjoy your life. There is a concept called Self-pacing given in the lessons. Be sure to read those.


I wish you the very best of luck on your journey.



Sey
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BlueRaincoat

United Kingdom
1516 Posts

Posted - Sep 06 2019 :  11:23:59 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Sey is, of course, absolutely right.

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Hayley

United Kingdom
13 Posts

Posted - Sep 06 2019 :  11:40:17 AM  Show Profile  Reply with Quote  Get a Link to this Reply
Thank you so much for your encouragement and advice BlueRaincoat and SeySorciere.
I have read the self-pacing lesson and I agree I need to take it slowly as I do have a tendency to rush in sometimes.
And yes we are lucky and I'm glad I found AYP and Yogani's teachings as I was starting to get overwhelmed with the array of teachings I was coming across in books and online.
I have been doing the breathing and meditation for almost 2 months now and finding it very helpful in keeping myself calm and focused.
Looking forward to the future
Best regards
Hayley
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