Cycles

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Heber13
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Cycles

Post by Heber13 » 13 Jan 2015, 10:26

I have noticed I go through cycles.

There are weeks I am so gung-ho wanting my house to be filled with scriptures, FHE with the kids, church and activities and home teaching and everything. It feels good.

I also have weeks where I focus on work or even just want to take a break and have a relaxing weekend to my self, and am not interested in letting home teachers come and interrupt my "me" time.

There are even cycles where I really am just not interested in religion or God because it seems like work and sacrifice, with pressure and regret for not being gung-ho 24/365. I wonder if during the non-religious-minded cycles if I feel the spirit leave me, or more bad things happen, or lack of love and lack of good things in my life.

I have paid attention to these cycles. Tried to learn from them.

For most of my life, it has caused me stress to keep up being super faithful all the time. I think I am more comfortable now just being in the moment and being present. I'm OK if I go through cycles. When I step back and look at my whole life overall, there is a good trajectory that I'm on, learning and growing and progressing. And the Atonement is there to help me correct course as I go. But overall...I think it is OK to go through cycles like this.

I think it is OK to let myself be real and whole. And because it cycles...I don't want to make changes permanent that I can't be ready to be in church when I'm ready for that cycle. I'm just glad I keep cycling back to keeping church in my life.

I give myself permission to go through these cycles, and learn from them all. Just wanted to share that today.
Luke: "Why didn't you tell me? You told me Vader betrayed and murdered my father."
Obi-Wan: "Your father... was seduced by the dark side of the Force. He ceased to be Anakin Skywalker and became Darth Vader. When that happened, the good man who was your father was destroyed. So what I told you was true... from a certain point of view."
Luke: "A certain point of view?"
Obi-Wan: "Luke, you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to...depend greatly on our point of view."

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LookingHard
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Re: Cycles

Post by LookingHard » 13 Jan 2015, 11:30

I have noticed to that I just can't keep up the effort of a full TBM without mental (spiritual) exhaustion setting in. I have found a level that is more sustainable with some occasional bumps up if it is something I think are fulfilling. And by fulfilling I don't mean "easy" or something I enjoy. There are efforts to me that are worth it. Some of my home teaching families can really use some help. Attending some Saturday afternoon leadership training isn't hard to do (except the time constraints), but it isn't worth it for me. Even though I would rather the church hire custodians, I also am OK with cleaning the building. That is something that needs to be done. I love doing service, so I try and do a bunch of that. This allows me to both do something I enjoy, but also gives me cover when I skip out of other things I am asked to do.

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MockingJay
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Re: Cycles

Post by MockingJay » 13 Jan 2015, 11:36

LookingHard wrote:I have noticed to that I just can't keep up the effort of a full TBM without mental (spiritual) exhaustion setting in. I have found a level that is more sustainable with some occasional bumps up if it is something I think are fulfilling. And by fulfilling I don't mean "easy" or something I enjoy. There are efforts to me that are worth it. Some of my home teaching families can really use some help. Attending some Saturday afternoon leadership training isn't hard to do (except the time constraints), but it isn't worth it for me. Even though I would rather the church hire custodians, I also am OK with cleaning the building. That is something that needs to be done. I love doing service, so I try and do a bunch of that. This allows me to both do something I enjoy, but also gives me cover when I skip out of other things I am asked to do.
+1 Like :smile: This is a great reminder of reasons to stay.

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SunbeltRed
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Re: Cycles

Post by SunbeltRed » 13 Jan 2015, 12:59

There's a great section in The Screwtape Letters about cycles (CS Lewis refers them as troughs I believe). Now I don't agree with Lewis's interpretation of what troughs are for and the overall premise of The Screwtape Letters, but I think he is dead on about highs and lows in how we feel about engaging with religion, and with everything. Ups and downs with it all.

I love to read, but sometimes, I just want to watch TV because I'm tired of reading. But the desire comes back and I'm off again. Cycles are in our nature.

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DarkJedi
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Re: Cycles

Post by DarkJedi » 13 Jan 2015, 13:53

I definitely go through cycles, sometimes like a roller coaster. I don't think it's all troughs and valleys, though. I think sometimes there are "flat" or "level" parts, and sometimes those parts are low (like my years of inactivity) and sometimes they are high. I used to have a bishop who became stake president who didn't think that was possible - with him you were either going up or down, there was no leveling off. That was many years ago, I still disagree.

I, too, have paid some attention to the cycles. I think the typical orthodox member might try to tie the cycles to things like scripture reading and prayer, and if you are on a downward part of the cycle then scripture reading and prayer will change your direction. I have not found that to be the case - I can sometimes be down while regularly reading and praying and I can sometimes be up without doing any reading or praying for an extended period of time. At this point I see no cause of the cycles nor do I see regularity to the cycles. Ups or downs can last short periods of time or longer periods of time and they don't appear to be equal.

When I was in grad school we had to read the Tao of Pooh. I liked it and I often reflect on it. I think I'll put it on the list to read again. One of the things that I remember most about it is that sometimes things just are, and sometimes we are so busy looking for a way to change the way things are and/or we are trying to live differently than the way things are and we are so distracted by those things that we don't accept that some things just are.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

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Heber13
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Re: Cycles

Post by Heber13 » 13 Jan 2015, 15:52

DarkJedi wrote:I can sometimes be down while regularly reading and praying and I can sometimes be up without doing any reading or praying for an extended period of time. At this point I see no cause of the cycles nor do I see regularity to the cycles. ...

When I was in grad school we had to read the Tao of Pooh. I liked it and I often reflect on it. I think I'll put it on the list to read again. One of the things that I remember most about it is that sometimes things just are, and sometimes we are so busy looking for a way to change the way things are and/or we are trying to live differently than the way things are and we are so distracted by those things that we don't accept that some things just are.
I may need to check out that Tao of Pooh. But clearly, my limited study in buddhism has brought me to the same reflection. Sometimes things just are, and as humans we try so hard to put meaning on things, cause and effect, and even regret or goals to prevent repeating suffering. And yet...sometimes things just are. It is why, I think sometimes my dog has more peace...to her...she just is a dog and does dog things. She's not trying to explain it (although she does try to manipulate me into petting her all the time).

I have seen many A-type personalities in my work environment trying to control things, and sometimes creating stories to either explain things or give the appearance of control. When sometimes, that's all they are. Stories. The rest is just the flow to life.

The church has many business leaders in it.
LookingHard wrote: I also am OK with cleaning the building.
Me too, LH. I know that needs to be done. It doesn't have to have a spiritual purpose behind it. Some things that are kept simple, are refreshing and feel good.
Luke: "Why didn't you tell me? You told me Vader betrayed and murdered my father."
Obi-Wan: "Your father... was seduced by the dark side of the Force. He ceased to be Anakin Skywalker and became Darth Vader. When that happened, the good man who was your father was destroyed. So what I told you was true... from a certain point of view."
Luke: "A certain point of view?"
Obi-Wan: "Luke, you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to...depend greatly on our point of view."

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Cadence
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Joined: 08 Dec 2009, 21:36

Re: Cycles

Post by Cadence » 14 Jan 2015, 06:39

I think humans just have ups and downs. No rhyme or reason to it.

100,000 years ago we were roaming around. Our main focus was just getting food for the day. Very simple. Now we must juggle multiple things at once every day. It has to be a recipe for highs and lows.
Faith, as well intentioned as it may be, must be built on facts, not fiction--faith in fiction is a damnable false hope. Thomas A. Edison

“The good thing about science is that it's true whether or not you believe in it.” Neil deGrasse Tyson

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DarkJedi
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Joined: 24 Aug 2013, 20:53

Re: Cycles

Post by DarkJedi » 14 Jan 2015, 08:39

Heber13 wrote: I may need to check out that Tao of Pooh. But clearly, my limited study in buddhism has brought me to the same reflection. Sometimes things just are, and as humans we try so hard to put meaning on things, cause and effect, and even regret or goals to prevent repeating suffering. And yet...sometimes things just are. It is why, I think sometimes my dog has more peace...to her...she just is a dog and does dog things. She's not trying to explain it (although she does try to manipulate me into petting her all the time).

I have seen many A-type personalities in my work environment trying to control things, and sometimes creating stories to either explain things or give the appearance of control. When sometimes, that's all they are. Stories. The rest is just the flow to life.

The church has many business leaders in it.
The Tao of Pooh is a basic introduction to Buddhist ideas allegorically presented through characteristics of Winnie the Pooh and his friends. Pooh would probably make a very good Buddhist. Most of my understanding of Buddhism comes from that book.
In the absence of knowledge or faith there is always hope.

Once there was a gentile...who came before Hillel. He said "Convert me on the condition that you teach me the whole Torah while I stand on one foot." Hillel converted him, saying: That which is despicable to you, do not do to your fellow, this is the whole Torah, and the rest is commentary, go and learn it."

My Introduction

nibbler
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Joined: 14 Nov 2013, 07:34
Location: Ten miles west of the exact centre of the universe

Re: Cycles

Post by nibbler » 14 Jan 2015, 09:55

I see cycles as a good thing. As you alluded to, issues may really crop up when interacting with people that are in one of our cycles but not in our current cycle.

I haven't read the book but if Pooh can remain even keeled with his collection of friends... His fiends get him out of jams too - usually when he gets stuck in a doorway or something. ;)

Makes me wonder what beloved cartoon character would fill in the following blank:

The Mormonism of __________.

:angel:

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Heber13
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Joined: 22 Apr 2009, 16:37
Location: In the Middle

Re: Cycles

Post by Heber13 » 14 Jan 2015, 10:34

nibbler wrote:The Mormonism of __________.
...Calvin and Hobbes.

Would love to see that. :)
Luke: "Why didn't you tell me? You told me Vader betrayed and murdered my father."
Obi-Wan: "Your father... was seduced by the dark side of the Force. He ceased to be Anakin Skywalker and became Darth Vader. When that happened, the good man who was your father was destroyed. So what I told you was true... from a certain point of view."
Luke: "A certain point of view?"
Obi-Wan: "Luke, you're going to find that many of the truths we cling to...depend greatly on our point of view."

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