Many of us have been running all our lives. We have the feeling that we need to run — into the future, away from the past, out from wherever we are. In truth, we don’t need to go anywhere. We just need to sit down and look deeply to discover that the whole cosmos is right here within us.
Thich Nhat Hahn
Aristotle concluded that bliss is not about perfection. You have to deal with bad fortune sometimes. The difference is whether you approach it with nobility and a great soul. What is a great soul or ‘mega-soul?’ Souls get big from opening out beyond the limitations of human knowledge and control. Everyone is called to be a mystic of some sort, and being open to mystery and myth, the intuitive and the non-rational, to art and ritual, to nature and animals, to absurd ideas and outrageous fantasies gives the soul room to fashion a lovable and thoughtful human being. However simple your life, however ordinary and retiring, you can have a mega-soul, a vast source of vitality, and the capacity for pain and failure as well. You can be noble in your simplicity and deep and wide in your ability to contain life.
When I experience difficult mind states that I cannot control, I know their source is in my own mind and that nothing happens externally. Even when a clearly external event has triggered the response of fear or sadness that has manifested as anger, it is essentially the grid of the mind that has shaped that response. Knowing that negativity or aversion is a transient energy never means to ignore it. It means to see it clearly, always, and work with it wisely.
To sit with the internal monologue, in equanimity and with patience, with a view that’s unwavering, allows the inner noise to quiet, to sputter out, to still. Not overnight, but in time, with steadfast commitment to overcome the downhill slip of mindfulness into unconscious, habituated believing, we can still the noisiness of selfing.
Our practice helps us to keep from being continuously reborn in old habit patterns. Interior silence allows us to be receptive to insight and allows us to remain mindful of intentions. It empties the mind and, in that emptying, allows us the experience of grace.
~Kathleen Dowling Singh
In our own lives the voice of God speaks slowly, a syllable at a time. Reaching the peak of years, dispelling some of our intimate illusions and learning how to spell the meaning of life-experiences backwards, some of us discover how the scattered syllables form a single phrase.
Rabbi Joshua Herschel
The idea of karma is that you continually get the teachings that you need to open your heart. To the degree that you didn’t understand in the past how to stop protecting your soft spot, how to stop armoring your heart, you’re given this gift of teachings in the form of your life, to give you everything you need to open further.