I’d like to encourage everyone on the North Shore to join in the 5th Annual Pete Seeger Legacy Sing this evening Sunday, March 18, from 6 to 8 o’clock at Magma, 11 Pleasant Street in Gloucester. It’s free and all freewill donations from the sing will go to March For Our Lives. This promises to be a heartwarming, good time and I’m sure you’ll agree that March For Our Lives is something that deserves our support. Here’s a link with the details: magma.center/event/pete-seeger-legacy-sing/
Now, to the gist of this post which is a repeat from last summer. Do you quarrel with yourself, or get down on yourself harshly? Can you be your own worst enemy? Do you give up on or berate yourself at times? That feels awful, right? Of course, we’ve all done this, yet a deeper, more satisfying friendship with ourselves is possible. How so?
“According to Buddhism we all possess—innately—astonishing potential within our own being, right now, to be more happy, more wise, more loving, more kind.” ~Venerable Robina Courtin
Gentle and Down-to-Earth
In the first place, getting to know ourselves in a gentle, down-to-earth way is the heart of meditation. In spite of what we may think at times, because we already are fundamentally decent and good, we can come to love ourselves fully. We already have basic awareness, a kind heart, and the willingness to be gentle, loyal, and truthful. These qualities are the cornerstones of friendship.
Equally important, in meditation we can learn to open our hearts to ourselves. We simply look within without judgement or harshness; we slow down with the willingness to see who we are–completely.
Uncovering Our Goodness
Moreover, in our practice, right along with what’s most admirable and uplifting in us, we befriend what’s most embarrassing or objectionable in ourselves, too. As we do the work of uncovering and seeing every dimension of ourselves, we discover what Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche called our innate basic goodness.
Similarly, our ability to stop and turn our light inward gives us a taste of what our innate basic goodness truly is, our inherent capacity to befriend ourselves and all of life. Once we befriend ourselves fully, we’ll naturally and effortlessly be able to extend more compassion to ourselves, and to our family, friends, neighbors, to the world’s animals, and to the environment, too.
Chogyam Trungpa Rinpoche’s approach to the teachings has shaped my approach to practice and sharing deeply. The teaching I’ve written about above, is at the heart of my practice. I learned this teaching from my teachers, and from studying Trungpa’s work. Here’s a beautiful expression of meditation as befriending ourselves from Trungpa published at Lions Roar: lionsroar.com/trust-in-your-goodness/
You’ll find more on these themes at my blog sweepingheartzen.org/category/buddhist-practice/
If you enjoyed this post, please subscribe to the SHZ Blog on our home page. It’s free. sweepingheartzen.org
Please visit a Sweeping Heart Zen event. We’re in historic Gloucester on Boston’s North Shore. Here’s a link to our calendar: sweepingheartzen.org/events/
I hope you have a wonderful week!