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I don't know If I should ask this here or not. But I am depressed enough and not able to find a way to get out of this situation to live life happily as I used to do before.

In my office I met a girl who is so stunning and met my expection which I wanted to see in my life partner. I then and there fallen in love with her without knowing anything about her life. After getting known by each other, I felt she also likes me. But something in my mind always ran than she is hiding something from me. One day somehow I get to know she is resigning and going to a different city. I asked her why she is resigning and leaving the city. She didn't ever told me the reason. She became very close to me and one day I asked her that I seriously think you are hiding something from me which I want to know. After requesting quit a few times, she told me that she is engaged and getting married to a guy who lives in the city she is going.

After that day, I can barely eat, drink and even breathe. I love her with everything I have, I saw all my life with her, now I am lost. I am not finding any ways to live life happily. I feel like I lost my purpose of life.

Is there any Lord Buddha's way that can take me out of this situation so that I can live again.

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    Buddhism represents a guidebook on how to detach (relief) yourself from passions and desires, not to show you how to overcome your depression in order to get re-attached to such (worldly) desires again. If you want to benefit from Buddhism you should be prepared for such detachment. I'm not saying it's best for you to go cold tukey on the love-addiction, but I'm saying that Buddhism doesn't recommend attachment to any kind of material or emotion. – Gabe Hiemstra Sep 19 '18 at 8:15
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    @Gabe Hiemstra: I don't want to get attached to anything materially or emotionally, I want eternal peace without being attached to any living or non living things. :) This is where I need suggestion from you guys how to get that detachment. :) – Anonymous Sep 19 '18 at 8:32
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    Can you summarise what (if anything) you know about Buddhism already? What have you already tried (not yet successfully) to help you with this problem? – ChrisW Sep 19 '18 at 9:55
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    I am pretty much into spiritualism from my childhood as my father and mother both are spiritual. We have taken Diksha from Satsang founded by Sri Sri Thakur Anukul Chandra. Where we are advised to live life with some specific rules like doing meditation every day before sunrise, how to behave with people, what to eat and what to not, like I am a vegan by birth. But somehow due to got influenced by the modern world and working on an IT industry I got distracted by some materialistic and emotional things from which I want to get rid of and get back on track again. – Anonymous Sep 19 '18 at 10:04
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    Is this a duplicate of "How can I forget my old girlfriend?" (and see my answer to that) – Andrei Volkov Sep 19 '18 at 14:01
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What you describe is suffering. Intense mental suffering. I am very sorry you are going through this and will try my best to help as I once went through something very similar and it was extremely unpleasant.

The true cause of your suffering is ignorance. In short, you are under the control of a delusion right now and the only way out is through knowledge and understanding of this delusion. You need to try and see the situation clearly with sober eyes.

So what is this delusion? This person you are so attached to and yearning/aching for... this woman of your dreams... she is utterly unreal just like a dream. She exists as nothing more than a figment if your fevered and frenzied imagination. You conjured her up based upon a whole slew of endless cravings and yearnings that you mistakenly believed would lead you to happiness and now you are discovering it only leads to suffering.

So what is the solution? Simple. You have to wake up from this dream of her and realize that she is utterly unreal just like a dream. When you realize she is nothing more than a mirage... the fever will dissipate and the attachment will dissolve.

How do you wake up? Also simple. Meditate on her to see her for what she really is: like an illusion.

Some suggestions:

  • Is she a fixed and permanent thing that never changes? Has she changed even slightly over the course of your relationship? Or is she changing moment by moment?

  • Is she really as perfect as you make her out to be? Consider all of her faults. Really look at them and don’t turn away.

  • Is she really capable of providing you lasting happiness? If that were true, then why are you so miserable right now?

  • Is she subject to aging, sickness and death? Is she going to die some day? Is your eventual parting from her an absolute guarantee?

I think if you really look you are going to find she does not exist as you have been imagining her. That imagination of her is just that: pure imagination. See that imagination for what it is and wake up from your day dream of her.

I really hope this helps!


Here is a video of Venerable Thubten Chodron giving a teaching on the above in a much more eloquent and useful way than I can: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1aq1fpjEe0Q Please have a look and see if it helps.

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Since I'm not sure how long you've been studying Buddhism, what I'll say might be what you've already known. Basically you've just had first hand experience of the Three characteristics inherent in life: Impermanence, Non-self, and Suffering. The most obvious one is Impermanence. Even if you and that girl were together, there's absolutely nothing that can guarantee that impermanence won't strike again at a later time: one partner might pass away before the other, or there might be constant quarrels and the marriage breaks up, or the personalities are simply incompatible, the list goes on and on. And the interesting bit about impermanence is that your current sorrow is also impermanent! Your pain will fade eventually and life goes on. There might be another girl showing up who has similar or even better attributes than the girl who left. Then the whole cycle of the Three Characteristics repeats itself again and again and you'll be drawn into that happiness/sorrow merry-go-round again and again. You see, the Buddha taught the Dhamma like a scientist showing his empirical data, so that you yourself can directly experience it and see how things work. But that's where His responsibility ends. Once you've seen how things work, it is your responsibility now to decide to stay or leave the merry-go-round.

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A good start would be looking for local Buddhist communities that pertain to a particular tradition. You can also read upon the numerous available literature but would likely end up reading either 1) modernized books on Buddhism often not in agreement with traditional teachings, or 2) classical literature which is hard to understand without a qualified teacher.

Of course, there is always the category of literature which is modern, stays true to tradition and is not hard to digest. Take for example the following article by Ajahn Sumedho, a teacher of the Thai Forest Tradition:

If we contemplate desires and listen to them, we are actually no longer attaching to them; we are just allowing them to be the way they are. Then we come to the realisation that the origin of suffering, desire, can be laid aside and let go of.

...

So the way is always working with the moments of daily life. When you are feeling depressed and negative, just the moment that you refuse to indulge in that feeling is an enlightenment experience. When you see that, you need not sink into the sea of depression and despair and wallow in it. You can actually stop by learning not to give things a second thought.

(source)

Another author, Sayadaw U Pandita, belonging to Theravada Buddhism, explains that even yogins experience depression but also says that listening to a good Dhamma talk can help fight such depression.

Many times a yogi may feel depressed and discouraged, having no mindfulness, thinking that his or her practice is going terribly badly. Mindfulness may not be able to pick up objects as it has in the past. At such a time it is essential for a yogi to pull out of this state, brighten the mind. He or she should go in search of encouragement and inspiration. One way to do this is by listening to a good Dhamma talk. A talk can bring about the enlightenment factor of joy or rapture; or it can inspire greater effort, or it can deepen the enlightenment factor of investigation by providing knowledge about practice. These three factors of enlightenment — rapture, effort and investigation — are most helpful in facing depression and discouragement.

(source)

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