External or internal

Because we are so imbued with this notion that happiness is something to be pursued by the continual transformation of the external, it can sound odd to hear the Buddha talk of uncovering happiness within. He acknowledged the inevitable presence of disequilibrium, which he called dukkha or suffering, but suggested we seek out its internal causes, understand them and solve the problem by means of internal adjustments. According to his analysis, it is not the objective discrepancy between the internal and the external condition that is the source of unhappiness; it is the desire for the external to change (or not to change as the case may be) which is itself an internal state.

Andrew Olwendzki, Unlimiting Mind

How to develop the heart

You shouldn’t chase after the past
or place expectations on the future.
What is past is left behind.
The future is as yet unreached.
Whatever quality is present
you clearly see, right there,
right there. 
Not taken in; unshaken. 
That’s how you develop the heart.

Bhaddekaratta Sutta

What is

Being human, we struggle constantly to stay with the miracle of what is and not to fall constantly into the black hole of what is not. This is an ancient challenge. As the Sufi poet Ghalib said centuries ago, “Every particle of creation sings its own song of what is and what is not. Hearing what is can make you wise; hearing what is not can drive you mad.” 

Mark Nepo, The Book of Awakening