Interrupting the Momentum of Compulsive States

One of the reasons we get carried away by states of over-activation (anxiety, compulsion, et. al.) is that there is an avoidance of feeling. Basically, the energy of the state feels uncomfortable, so we avoid being with it directly at the level of the felt-sense.

Our avoidance is rooted in the ego's observation (made in early in life) that feeling things make them more intense. Pretending things aren't happening puts them in the background.

Problem is, becoming completely conscious of states at the level of energy is the only way they can discharge and move. So by pretending they are not there, or minimizing them, or denying them, we are basically locking them in.

Because the ego is basically concerned with minimizing unpleasant sensations of any kind, this truth never really makes any sense to it. As Rumi famously said, "the only way out of the fire is through it." The ego's answer to that is, "the only through the fire is pretending there isn't one."

But, as we become more adept at surfing the waves of our experience, we discover the fire is not what we thought. As we stay with what the mind labeled as challenging or unbearable, all sorts of feeling-states, sensations and energies come to the foreground that were not in the ego’s script. Extreme grief turns to bliss and laughter. Or joy opens the way to extreme tenderness. Or deep depression opens into the deepest equanimity. We can be way too sure of where all of our inner experience is going, and the reality is that we have no idea. We place far too many limitations on how states can transform.

So can we be innocent? Can we not know what we're feeling? Can we drop the labels for "what's wrong with us," just for a moment? Can we not know where this whole thing is going? Can we drop the sense that we're fixing something that is broken? Can we drop the sense that feeling strongly is some kind of defect?