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Naikan


Rennyo
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Naikan (Japanese: 内観, lit. “inside looking” or “introspection”) is a structured method of self-reflection developed by Yoshimoto Ishin(1916-1988) a business man and devout Jodo Shinshu Buddhist who, as a young man, had engaged in an ascetic 'contrition' (mishirabe) practice involving sensory deprivation through dwelling in a dark cave without food, water or sleep. Wishing to make such introspection available to others he developed Naikan as a less difficult method which he first introduced to young people who had been incarcerated for committing crime and social disturbances. Later the practice was introduced to the general public. Naikan practitioners claim that Naikan helps people understand themselves and their relationships.

 

 

Naikan practice is based on three questions:

  • What have I received from (person x)?
  • What have I given to (person x)?
  • What troubles and difficulties have I caused to (person x)?

A related fourth question, "What troubles and difficulties has (person x) caused me", is purposely ignored in Naikan. Naikan presupposes that we're all naturally good at seeing answers to this fourth question, and that too much focus on this question is responsible for much of one's misery in day-to-day life.

 

 

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naikan

 

Has anyone here ever tried this? I tried it a few months ago; just playing around with it, and only for 10 minutes, but the effect was profound. At the end, I felt diminished, very small, my ego was checked, and yet I didn't care. I felt light and supported, held up by some kind of grace.

Edited by Rennyo
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http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Naikan

 

Has anyone here ever tried this? I tried it a few months ago; just playing around with it, and only for 10 minutes, but the effect was profound. At the end, I felt diminished, very small, my ego was checked, and yet I didn't care. I felt light and supported, held up by some kind of grace.

 

It depends upon where your journey begins and if you seek a balance between 'ego' and 'self'.

 

Myron

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