There is some person in my life and whenever I see his or her photo, or something related to him or her (e. g. reminder of the place he or she lives), I experience strong feelings.

They are totally irrational (I haven't been in contact with this person for years, I live thousands of kilometers apart from him or her) and I don't understand them (when you don't see a person for a long time, you tend to forget him or her, but I don't). No psychological technique I tried (all kind of NLP stuff, EMDR, meditations, relaxation tapes, long walks, sex, talking with lots of nice people, hard work and whatnot) didn't help me understand and get rid of those feelings.

Whenever I think I've forgotten him or her, I get a reminder from the outside world (someone mentions something related to him or her, or a there is a billboard with a message related to him or her, or I hear a piece of music from his or her region in the radio etc.).

Basically, I need to figure out whether

  1. I should do something with or about this person or
  2. just forget him or her.

What publicly available Buddhist teachnings can I read in order to learn in order to sort out these feelings (begin to understand their nature) on my own ?

Notes:

  1. I don't want to discuss what kind of feelings they are. I just need a manual, which I can apply and do it myself.
  2. Going to a group, or talking to a psychologist or guru aren't viable options because according to my experience 99.9 % of advice you get from other people on important matters is wrong (in the past such advice caused more harm than good).
up vote 7 down vote accepted

According to Buddhist dependent origination, depending on contact feeling arise, depending on feeling craving arise, depending on craving clinging arise, etc...

The feelings that arise is a result of past conditioning and when there is contact the past feeling that was conditioned arise, be that attachment, revulsion or neutral feeling. The practice to recondition how we look at a person, others and ourself included, is the 32 parts of the body practice of which the link is one example. Google for ways to practice the 32 parts of the body.

You could watch the feeling arising, staying and changing and then fading away. Seeing its impermanence will make it more bareable for you.

Also see its conditioned nature. Feeling is conditioned by contact. It can not arise without contact. In your case seeing a bilboard triggers a memory which is manifested as a thought. When mind is contacted by a thought a feeling arises.

All this is to diminish the resitance toward that feeling. Just let it arise and pass away, don't get involved with it.

Hope this helps

  • It's not about getting of emotions, it's about correctly deciphering them. In the past, similar "reminders" were indications that something had to be done in some area (when I acted based on such intuitive hunch, I figured out that those hunches indicated real, objectively measurable problems or things, where my action was required). – DP_ May 18 '15 at 8:45

How about just accepting that the emotions are there? Sometimes fighting, struggling are the things that intensify emotions. Unfortunately emotions can't be erased, we can only try to observe them when they arise and acknowledge them as they are. Maybe accepting that these feelings toward this person may stay forever. Will it be that bad?

Have you tried writing a private journal? I've found that very therapeutic for letting out stuck emotions.

Good luck!

Trying to forget is also being involved with the person. So you will not forget. Best way to forget it not try to remember or not to forget. If you hear something about the person or place analyse the feeling that arising and do not be averse or attached to them.

You could try reading:

  • Beyond the Breath: Extraordinary Mindfulness Through Whole-Body Vipassana Meditation by Marshall Glickman

But best is to get a competent meditation teacher or take a Vipassana course.

  • As I told UrsulRosu, it's not about forgetting, it's about finding out the correct answer - whether to do something with this person or not, and if the former - what exactly I need to do and how. Forgetting is just one of many options, and up to now it didn't work. – DP_ May 18 '15 at 8:49

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