HAPPINESS MEDITATION OF THE DAY.
Just a note: This doesn’t mean that you shouldn’t ever feel sad or fearful, etc. On the contrary, part of a healthy meditation practice is full awareness and acceptance of whatever emotion is here at any given time. But after you’ve taken a little time to be with what’s here, you can acknowledge that it’s a passing thing. It comes and goes. It’s not you. Then you can let it go and get back to who you really are at your core: joy, peace, and love.
It is always now. This might sound trite, but it is the truth as a matter of conscious experience. The reality of your life is always now. And to realize this is liberating. In fact, I think there is nothing more important to understand if you want to be happy in this world.
But we spend most of our lives forgetting this truth— overlooking it, fleeing it, repudiating it. And the horror is that we succeed. We manage to avoid being happy while struggling to become happy, fulfilling one desire after the next, banishing our fears, grasping at pleasure, recoiling from pain—and thinking, interminably, about how best to keep the whole works up and running. As a consequence, we spend our lives being far less content than we might otherwise be. We often fail to appreciate what we have until we have lost it. We crave experiences, objects, relationships, only to grow bored with them. And yet the craving persists. I speak from experience, of course."
Sam Harris, in “Waking Up.”
I love how Sam Harris puts things. So good.
Sam Harris, in “Waking Up”
This is so inspiring to me.
"The world isn’t being destroyed by democrats or republicans, red or blue, liberal or conservative, religious or atheist — the world is being destroyed by one side believing the other side is destroying the world. The world is being hurt and damaged by one group of people believing they’re truly better people than the others who think differently. The world officially ends when we let our beliefs conquer love. We must not let this happen.”
~ Andrew W.K., The Village Voice
Read the complete article at
I don’t envision a single thing that, when untamed and undeveloped, leads to such great harm as the mind. The mind, when untamed and undeveloped, leads to great harm.
I don’t envision a single thing that, when tamed and developed, leads to such great benefit as the mind. The mind, when tamed and developed, leads to great benefit.
I don’t envision a single thing that, when unrestrained and uncultivated, brings about such suffering & stress as the mind. The mind, when unrestrained & uncultivated, brings about suffering & stress.
I don’t envision a single thing that, when restrained & cultivated, brings about such happiness as the mind. The mind, when restrained & cultivated, brings about happiness.
(Adapted from the “Ekadhamma Suttas of the Buddha: A Single Thing.” Translated from the Pali by Thanissaro Bhikkhu)
Photograph: “Meditation” source: freakyhedgehog.deviantart.com
"Two Kinds of Suffering"
There are two kinds of suffering: the suffering which leads to more suffering, and the suffering which leads to the end of suffering.
The first is the pain of grasping after fleeting pleasures and aversion for the unpleasant, the continued struggle of most people day after day.
The second is the suffering which comes when you allow yourself to feel fully the constant change of experience – pleasure, pain, joy, and anger – without fear or withdrawal. This suffering of our experience leads to inner fearlessness and peace.
~ Ajahn Chah
(It takes some time to get your head around the truth of this. I’m still working on it but am beginning to learn how powerful this is. It’s still easier for me to experience the second kind of suffering in a formal meditation sit, but I hope to get better at it when i’m off the cushion too.)
This is what meditation is all about.
Just being honest, but this is why I have walked away from organized religion of any kind.
The reason you exist is to be fully, 100% authentically you.
Love isn’t a state of perfect caring. It is an active noun, like “struggle.” To love someone is to strive to accept that person exactly the way he or she is, right here and now.
~ Fred Rogers
YOUR THOUGHTS = YOUR DESTINY
This is actually a variation on an earlier teaching from The Upanishads, and I’ve posted the original before. But I like this version too; it’s like a flow chart mapping out how powerful your thoughts really are. When you are mindful of the power (both positive and negative) your thoughts have, you are better able to choose more carefully what you think about.
Although compassion arises from empathy, the two are not the same. Empathy is characterized by a kind of emotional resonance - feeling with the other person. Compassion, in contrast, is not just sharing experience with others, but also wishing to see them relieved of their suffering. Being compassionate does not mean remaining entirely at the level of feeling, which could be quite draining; rather, it means wanting to do something to relieve the hardships of others, and this desire to help, far from dragging us further into suffering ourselves, actually gives us energy and a sense of purpose and direction. When we act upon this motivation, both we and those around us benefit still more.
~ H.H. The Dalai Lama
(Image from musicweb.ucsd.edu)