As Sylvia Boorstein frequently reminds us, the moment in which the mind acknowledges ‘This isn’t what I wanted, but it’s what I got’ is the point at which suffering disappears. We are here now, the future is always uncertain. Our practice is to stay grounded and be open to what arises in awareness
The practice of mindfulness is very simple.
You stop, you breathe, and you still your mind.
You come home to yourself so that you can enjoy the here and now in every moment
Thich Nhat Hahn, Silence
There is a lot in our current reality that we do not like, or we would prefer to be different:
One point that Ajahn Sumedho would stress regularly, is that loving things is not the same as liking them. Having kindness for ourselves or for other beings is not the same as liking everything. We often come a cropper by trying to make ourselves like everything. This is a completely wrong approach. We’re not trying to like everything, rather we’re recognising that everything belongs. Everything is part of nature: the bitter as well as the sweet, the beautiful as well as the ugly, the cruel as well as the kindly. The heart that recognises that fundamentally everything belongs is what I would describe as being the heart of kindness, the essence of kindness. If we get that really clear within us, and begin to train ourselves to recognise it, we realise that we can cultivate this quality of radical acceptance.
Ajahn Amaro, Radical Acceptance
We have a choice these days: to feed our fear – and there is a lot being spread on social media – or to drop the mind into moments of rest…
When we meditate, we are training the mind
to stop feeding a pain pattern
Ruth King, author and Meditation teacher, Soothing the Hot Coals of Rage
What is this self inside us, this silent observer,
Severe and speechless critic, who can terrorize us
And urge us on to futile activity
And in the end, judge us still more severely
For the errors into which his own reproaches drove us.
T. S. Eliot, The Elder Statesman
To nourish the soul is to rest in being. Our greatest unhappiness comes from our longing. Our greatest peace comes from our being. But we stay rooted in the easy and convenient. We eliminate as much pain as we can from our lives and end up painted into a corner we call safety. Safety keeps you numb and dead. People are caught by surprise when it is time to die. They have allowed themselves to live so little.
The mind is exactly this tree, that grass….
without thought or feeling both disappear
Ikkyu, 1394 – 1481 , Zen Buddhist monk and poet.