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Meditation and Trading

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Below is a extract from post 212 by Nick Radge in the Adaptive Analysis thread:

Trading in a state of zero emotion is very difficult and certainly took me many years to understand and then master. The only advice I can offer is to simply be aware of your emotions when they arise. Ask yourself why you had that thought? Why was I angry? Why am I spending my days looking for a better method? Why am I experiencing this anxiety?

The above is only half the story;
This is the foundation that classic Buddhist Meditation is built on:
Any emotion produces a sensation within the body --- it is this sensation that we are either craving or advoiding and NOT the physical object that caused the sensation eg: you have a big win at the races, you will have a tingling sensation pulsing through the body -- it is this tingling sensation we want more of so we chase another bigger win (it must be bigger to produce a more gross sensation) if on the other hand we have a big loss, then we have "heavy solid" blockages through the body which we then do our best to avoid --- the mind leads us to believe that it the outside circumstances that are causing our mood swings eg: money, ego, etc, whilst keeping us unaware of the true cause:

In Buddhist tradition the proof of this lies in the fact that what ever we have physically won/lost can be lost or replaced and eventually u must lose it all anyhow (death) ---but there is no way you can produce or avoid the sensations:

The way out of this dilemma is "unattached observation" of these sensations.
These are both very gross sensations and do not require deep meditation to observe:
You first try to be aware of the sensation and then simply try to describe it as you would to doctor eg: tingling, hot, cold, heavy, solid, moist etc.
You then try and narrow the sensation down to its center -- this after many attempts is always a pin point --- VITAL part of this process is that you do not personally identify with these sensations -- you MUST maintain a doctor/patient attitude.

If you try to logically analyse them you are only empowering them.



Cheers
 

Julia

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Interesting topic, Coyotte.

I think a lot of people are put off the subject because "meditation" sounds quasi religious and esoteric.

A more recent term seems to be "mindfulness" which I think is probably easier to comprehend and relate to. It essentially involves the steps you've described and can be really useful in narrowing down and eventually resolving whatever it is that's the cause of our emotional discomfort.

Thanks for bringing the subject up. It has ramifications for all our lives, not just share trading.

Julia
 
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Julia :

really a pity --- Buddhist meditation praticed in it's pure form has nothing to do with religion, morals etc -- mindfulness is not a new term , it go'es back 2500 years ago -- mindfulness is what true meditation leads to :

By being mindful of your emotions , you become aware of the suttel viabrations coursing through the body , Anger , Fear and Joy are the most gross of these and are quite open to the householder during the normal course of daily living.

By understanding the sensation , you begin to understand the emotion .
Understand the emotion and over a period of time you stop REACTING to the emotions and start ACTING on them .

Because of the gross nature of these three emotions there is no need to
practice meditation --- just become aware of their sensations at the time .

EG : Anger/Fear can often reveal it's self as a headache (solid/tightening )--- don't take a asprin , don't wish it away --- simply observe it , without attachment --- and try to get to the center .


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Interesting discussion :)

I was under the impression that the "objective" of buddhist meditation was to develop a single point of focus... the spaces between your thoughts

It is within this space we become more enlightened.
 
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That's Zen -- after the teachings left India

One could use what i'm describing with trading, in the sense of instead of reacting to price you act --- price simply is what is, without emotion.


Cheers
 
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any suggestions for a mantra coyotte?
Like hari krishna used to allocate individual mantras to followers - yours in "yabba dabba" yours is "dabba doo" etc etc
Harvard Uni analysed it and suggested that simply repeating "one", and letting the sound flood your mind - is just as effective.
then again a christian might enlarge that to "i am at one with christ" or some such.
Not dissimilar to what nuns do (as I'm told) - never got into the habit enough to know ;)
no mantra needed maybe? - (maybe "zinc"? lol)

ahh then there's thinking of your breathing - repeat 'one' with every breath
then maybe thinking of heart beat - 4 heart beats per breath as well -
wowo - suddenly you're breaths drop to about 20% normal volume ;) and you start floating lol.
 
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hindsight :

First you must determine the purpose of the meditation -- most techniques apart from visualisations are suitable for their intended purpose :

There a two broad groups

1: Mind Concerntration --- Mantras, Observation, Chants -- Tibetian , Krishna and most Hindie methods are based around this -- but Breath Observation is used in Buddhism so as to prepare the mind for the higher form of meditation (simply observe the breath as it passes through the nostrails -- warm/cold mild/strong wet/dry etc )

2: Insight Meditation --- This is the type of meditation that the higher monks are taught , two available in the West are Zen and Vippassiona

It is Vippasionia that I am referring to in this thread

With simple "breath observation " as described above it is only a short step to observing the lower Gross Sensations of - Anger, Fear and Joy -- eg : the breath always quickens in the moments BEFORE Anger manifests -- from there if you catch it quick enough you can observe the underlying SENSATION --- the anger will now disperse (you have diverted the mind , but more important you have observed the Anger at it's true level )

As you can see from the above example , you don't have spend months in a cave , the more you can interact with others the more opportunities will arise

Be aware of the emotions and they will lose their control over you and to my way of thinking if you can TRADE in a Emotion free state of mind , you must be a better trader

The Emotions will always still be there and continue to arise ( thats life) but they will gradually lose their power.




Cheers
 
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Here are 2 for you....

Om Gum Ganapatayei Namaha

To remove percieved obstacles in the way of achieving success

Om Shrim Klim Maha Lakshmi Namah

For creating abundance

Try chanting them every day for 40 days and see what happens :)
 
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If you live without attachment, you live beyond the shadow of duality....nothing is either good or bad... it just is :)

Anyone mastered this?
 
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Coyotte -
I've been able to get hold of the training notes for the "Birdville sect" course, held every couple of years. Its a mixture of every religion that has ever been through Birdsville, and is conducted by the publican.

1. Do not walk behind me, for I may not lead. Do not walk ahead of me for I may not follow. Do not walk beside me either, just f*** off and leave me alone.
2. The journey of a thousand miles begins with a broken fanbelt and a flat tyre.
3. The darkest hours come just before dawn. So if you're going to steal your neighbour's milk and newspaper, that's the best time to do it.
4. Never test the depth of water with both feet.
5. Before you judge someone you should walk a mile in their shoes. That way, when you judge them, you're a mile away - and you have their shoes.
6. If at first you don't succeed, avoid skydiving.
7, Give a man a fish and he will eat for a day. Teach him how to fish, and he will sit in a boat and drink beer all day.
8. Have you ever lent someone a 20 and never seen that person again? It was probably worth it.
9. Good judgement comes from experience. Experience comes from bad judgement.
10. When we are born, we are naked, wet and hungry, and we get smacked on the ass. From then on life gets worse.
11. There are two theories about how to win an argument with a woman. Neither one works.
 

RichKid

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This is a great thread imo Coyotte, keep it up. And guys, while humour is good let's keep it on topic please. Any tangential religious discussion can go in another thread, especially as there is a view that Buddhism is a philosophy rather than a religion....eitherway, let's keep this thread directed at Meditation and Trading.

(btw, as psychology and the role of our emotions is an integral part of most methodologies I've re-located this thread in this Trading Strategies forum).
 
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I thought Julia summed up this thread

But I will carry on, some may find some help in it.


The objective is to help make you a better Trader by trying to reign in your "Mind and Emotions" so as you ACT and stop REACTING.

There are a few ground rules:
1: You must not disturb another being's "peace of mind" -- this is to protect you, by disturbing others you disturb your own "peace of mind" which will only set you back.

2: You must not identify with the sensations, emotions or thoughts as they arise -- treat them as a Doctor/Patient relationship -- the Doctor is only interested in the symptions the patient is describing and is not personally involved --- if you identify with them you will en-power them and make the situation even worse.

3: As these meditations are pure in form, you're better off not to mix them with other forms of relaxation techniques or meditations --- leave them aside for the time being.

The method I'm describing is based on the Buddha's original teachings, left India to be preserved and practiced in Burma and only recently returned to India and since the late 1970s is slowly spreading worldwide.

There are two meditation techniques involved.

1: Anapana -- this is a series of various "mind concentration" methods, to prepare you for the higher form of meditation known as:

2: Vispassana -- it is in this method that the sensations become apparent and can be worked upon.

My experience with this dates back to the late 70s/early 80s -- I used to attend 10 day live in courses three times a year for around 10 years and practice daily for 2 hrs per day otherwise -- since that period I have attended about another three courses and now practice for 30 min daily.

In the latter years of these courses there have Catholic Nuns in attendance and Police Officers on stress leave -- so really is open to all .

I am permitted to teach you Anapana and the initial stages of Vipassana but am forbidden to carry on into Vipassana beyond this stage -- for this you must attend a course --- for our purposes (gross sensations) this will be more than adequate.

I will post a new lesson once a week -- practice it for a week, but do not drop it when the new lesson arrives, this is continuing -- what you practice this week you build on --- by doing the lessons in order you can join in any time.

As I am having a break from trading for the next 6 weeks, I may not be able to respond to questions promptly -- but feel free to ask any questions or pm ---- sorry no debate will be entered into:

The 1st lesson will be the following post --- seems simple, probably stupid but this is how Anapana starts:


Cheers
 
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LESSON ONE (1)


A walking meditation:

Just select a area where you have few distractions:

Head down, eyes focused forward, hands behind back.

Slowly walk forward, try and feel the pressure on your soles, then ankles and up through the calves -- work up and down this area, try and become aware of heat, cold, pressure, pain, sweat -- anything --- just describe to yourself whats occurring in this area --- Thoughts and distractions entering -- just accept that they are and get back to the task at hand -- try to do this for around 20min:

A Breath Meditation :
the foundation of this technique

Perform this daily for 20 min: (more than once a day if you can)
use a silent ticking alarm clock.

Sit upright -- no slouching.

Now start to observe the breath passing through the nostrils.
same as before, we are just looking for any sensations and just accepting that this is what is occurring at this moment.

Notice the temp of the breath as it is drawn in -- the temp as it is exhaled.

If you're having distracting thoughts, just accept it and get back to the breath.

If your thoughts start to get to overwhelming -- try holding your breath -- the mind will be distracted and you can regain control.

And you thought all these years you were in control!!!


Cheers
 
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coyotte, sounds good, just as long as I don't have to use the Doctor/Patient concept on my portfolio - right now I'd be doing full time CPR ;)
 
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Actually good point Snake.

Yes most people would be in a form of meditation whilst trading, specifically day/short term traders --- ie: concentration of the mind on a single object.

Maybe this is one of the reasons why you can feel so fagged out at the end.
The "emotions and sensations" are arising -- you're in a meditative state, but only re-enforcing them.

But to be aware of your "breath - sensations - emotions" there is no need to be in a meditative state -- you can be aware of them during the normal course of your daily routine.


cheers
 
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coyotte said:
Below is a extract from post 212 by Nick Radge in the Adaptive Analysis thread:
Trading in a state of zero emotion is very difficult and certainly took me many years to understand and then master. The only advice I can offer is to simply be aware of your emotions when they arise. Ask yourself why you had that thought? Why was I angry? Why am I spending my days looking for a better method? Why am I experiencing this anxiety?
If you try to logically analyse them you are only empowering them.
Cheers

So actually your take on meditation as it applies to trading is at odds with Mr Radge as he believes in questioning his emotions whilst the buddhist way is just to note emotions arising and let them go, not to dwell on them. Attaining a meditative state is freeing yourself of thought altogether, this is not what Radge is advocating here. I realise the quote from Radge is an extract, does he go on to say that emotions should be set aside and not thought about?
 

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dhukka said:
So actually your take on meditation as it applies to trading is at odds with Mr Radge as he believes in questioning his emotions whilst the buddhist way is just to note emotions arising and let them go, not to dwell on them. Attaining a meditative state is freeing yourself of thought altogether, this is not what Radge is advocating here. I realise the quote from Radge is an extract, does he go on to say that emotions should be set aside and not thought about?

Hi dhukka
Here's the link to the complete post by Radge, my understanding from an article he wrote in a journal is that he's a relatively recent convert to the 'psychology is the most important thing in trading' school of thought, Nick may even have extracted the article here somewhere, think it was from the Australian Technical Analysts Assoc journal. However, being as experienced and skilled as he is, he's certainly made the best of his discovery in a short time. This goes to show that even experienced traders can take some time to bring it all together, so us less experienced traders should not despair imo!

Radge recommends Mark Douglas for advice on trading psychology, other's have recommended Chris Shea to me, he speaks of these issues as well, both are well known in this field from, what I gather. But more to the point- I'm not sure if their advice conflicts with the discussion of meditation herein.
 
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