Caring for our pain with true love

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Lately, I have been hooked on Thich Nhat Hanh’s True Love: A Practice for Awakening the Heart.

This short 102 page book, is a jewel, with each page being a piece of truest deep heart wisdom. I’d like to share a few words:

“Understanding is the fruit of meditation. When we practice deep looking directed toward the heart of reality, we receive help, we receive understanding, we receive the wisdom that makes us free. If there is deep pain within you, meditate.

Meditating is not trying to run away, trying to ignore the presence of the pain, but on the contrary, it is looking at it face-to-face. You have to practice deep looking directed toward the nature of this pain, because, we are joy, but we are also pain; we are understanding, but we are also ignorance. Meditating is not transforming oneself into a battlefield where one side is fighting another, where good fights evil. This is not Buddhist meditation. Buddhist meditation is based on the principle of nonduality. This means we are mindfulness, if we are love, we are also ignorance, we are also suffering, and there is no reason to suppress anything at all. When the seed of anger manifests on the level of our conscious mind, our immediate awareness, it is because the seed of anger is in the depths of our consciousness, and then we begin to suffer. Our immediate awareness is something like our “living room.” The task of the meditator is not to chase away or to suppress the energy of anger that is there but rather to invite another energy that will be able to care for the anger.

You can use the method of mindful breathing to make the seed of this other energy grow inside you. It will then manifest in the form of energy, and this energy will embrace your energy of anger like a mother taking a baby in her arms. Then there is only tenderness, there is no fighting with, or discriminating against, the pain. The purpose of this practice of mindful breathing is to help to give birth to this precious energy called mindfulness and to keep it alive.

Mindfulness is like a light, enabling concentration to really be there, and that also makes it possible for us to look deeply into the heart of things. From this looking deeply is born deep vision, understanding. Mindfulness brings concentration, understanding, love, and freedom. When the energy of compassion and love touches us, healing establishes itself.

Mindfulness is always mindfulness of something. When you are angry and you know that you are angry, mindfulness is there. Anger is one energy, mindfulness is another, and this second kind of energy arises in order to care for the first like a mother caring for her baby. So every time you have an energy that needs to be transformed, like jealousy or fear, do something to care for this energy, for this negative energy, if you do not want this energy to destroy you.

Touch the seed of mindfulness, and then all of this energy will be able to establish itself in your “living room,” like a mother tenderly embracing your pain.”

Namaste, dear mindful ones.

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