As I do more and more of my recollection of my life, and enter into those past moods, I'm becoming more and more aware that those moods are all consuming. When I'm in the midst of feeling angry at someone that is my reality and I forget other realities. I might be intellectually capable of realizing that other realities exist, but they are not real for me. It's just a recognition that those States are out there but they aren't really relevant or valid to me in my state of anger because my state of anger is all consuming.
I chose anger as an example because it's a strong state, but it is just as true for any other state, whether it be hunger or worry or satisfaction, or the feeling of victory. All those moods are all consuming and recognition of other moods is really nothing more than paying lip service to the fact that other states exist. They really aren't real to me at the moment. I hear people say we should be more connected to the moment. In a sense they're right, but in a sense they've missed the mark. What I mean is we are totally wholly and completely connected to the moment which is our mood to the extent that other moods are not accessible or real to us at that time.
Let's go back to the state of anger. Try to remember the last time you were really really angry. Do you feel that angry now? Of course not. Naturally you probably remember the anger, and thinking of it may even make you feel a little angry now, but unless you work really hard and put some effort into it you won't re-enter that original state of anger. It's possible to do so but it takes work.
Right now as you read this blog I doubt you're feeling that anger to the same extent that you felt it in the original situation. In fact if that situation has fully completed you probably don't feel any of the anger. If part of that situation lingers you might feel some anger. But once again it's not the same as the original anger. That's what I mean about all our states: they are all consuming but once they leave us there virtually non-existent, unless we are vigilant and go back and re-experience those States as much as we can and as often as we can. By such practice we become more aware that these states are ephemeral, and they're not as real as we like to think they are.
By doing this we start to learn detachment. That not only gives us freedom from getting swallowed by our state, but it also allows us to not feel trapped by our state.
Just a few days ago I was consumed by a state of despair. It was almost overwhelming but fortunately I remembered to do my breathing exercises, and I dispelled the state in about 20 minutes. It was rather shocking for me because I mean I really dispelled the state. I mean the state was absolutely gone and I had almost forgotten the feeling 2 hours later. Yet I remember my thoughts at that time if not my feelings, and my thoughts were of total despair, as if I should give up everything and all I did was futile and fruitless. I think moving into these states is part of this recollecting activity, because it becomes easier to move in and out of moods as I practice it more regularly. The feeling of despair that came over me was a negative experience. On the other hand I also feel really positive experiences. Once I felt euphoric but there is absolutely no reason for it. Naturally I don't try to dispel those States. Anyway what I'm trying to say is we should try to cultivate a state of less attachment to these moods and feelings because they come and go like the seasons. We should be connected to that deeper thing inside us which doesn't come and go; our attention.