Softening the mind

Softness means opening to what is there, relaxing into it. At such a time try this mantra: “It’s ok. Whatever it is, it’s ok. Let me feel it” . That is the softening of the mind. You can open to your experience with a sense of allowing, and simply be with whatever predominates: a pain, a thought, an emotion, anything.

Softening the mind involves two steps. Firstly, become mindfully aware of whatever is most predominant. That is the core guideline for all insight meditation: so the first step is just to see, to open. For the second step, notice how you are relating to whatever arises. Often we can be with an arising appearance but in a reactive way. If we like it we tend to hold on to it, we become attached. If we do not like it because it is painful in any way, we tend to contract, to push away out of fear, irritation or annoyance. The easiest way to relax is to stop trying to make things different. Rather than try to create another space, simply allow space for whatever is going on.

Joseph Goldstein, Insight Meditation

One thought on “Softening the mind

  1. I’m trying so hard to ignore the way I feel, to hide it, to transform it, so reading this has made me cry. I wish I could feel it, allow it

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