Has the internet made you mentally soft and fat?
Thich Nhat Hanh is answering questions from his 1 million+ fans on Facebook. (You can like and receive updates from his FB page here.)
The first question he answered was, “How do I love myself?” Beautifully, he begins with, “Come back into your body and breathe.” Playfully he says, “Hello body! I’m home!”
The further instructions are basically, sit and be with your body, breathe mindfully, watch mindfully. Being with yourself mindfully IS loving yourself.
He goes on to say that when you understand your own suffering — when you can sit patiently, mindfully with yourself — then you will begin to understand the suffering of others. You will understand the suffering of your father, your mother, your ancestors. Implicit in this? You will stop blaming others for your suffering and see that they too suffer. No one is exempt.
Compassion arises naturally from this simple insight. Enjoy!
I’ve been going again and again to watching this clip of Pema Chödrön talking about authentically engaging with ourselves and our experience.
She says, when you seek out teachings:
You do want to hear something that is genuinely going to be of value in your life. And the approach of Buddhism, and the approach that all the Buddhist teachers have been drawn to personally, and then end up teaching, is about engaging in your life fully. And having an attitude of kindness toward yourself and all things that might arise in you, such as: your rage and your addictions and your grief and your loneliness and your resentment, and all these different things. Some attitude of kindness towards your humanity. And a way of working with it, which is acknowledging it completely and fully, for what it is. Very conscious of what is going on with yourself. But with an attitude of kindness. Trungpa Rinpoche used to call it ‘making friends with yourself.’