Question: It sometimes seems to me that fear has become an unacceptable emotion on the spiritual path. There are so many teachings that talk about how unhelpful fear is, and how it gets in the way of growth. Yet for me, I am increasingly recognizing how dominated by fear my whole life has been, and the more I practice, the more this fear feels like it is dominating my life. I feel it vibrating through my body, making it difficult to breathe, and I often get very little sleep at night as fear and panic surface just as I am "dropping off". It seems to be too terrifying to let go of control enough to fall asleep. I am trying to welcome this fear as a friend who I can learn from. But I find it very, very difficult when I hear teachings that don't seem to have anything positive to say about working with fear - but just name it as an obstacle on the path. I hope that you can help me with this.
Recently I caught up with Professor Robert Thurman at Tibet House in New York City. We were talking about some of the comments he made at his Occupy Wall Street talk (which I recorded and posted here) and how it is important not to just leave your practice behind as you leave the cushion. We then made this six minute video on What Meditation Really Is. You can watch it after the jump.
Elizabeth explains how we can understand reality just by wrestling with basic questions that we all have: "What is the basis of suffering? What causes happiness?"
Elizabeth Namgyel describes compassion as a radical expansion of self.
In this 2 minute skype video, Elizabeth explains to Erric how we can understand reality just by wrestling with basic questions that we all have: "What is the basis of suffering? What causes happiness?"
Sometimes I feel like my life is spent in a dark, smoky, crowded, and noisy nightclub and that I’ve forgotten that there’s a door that’s always open if I choose to leave.
This five minute video is the first part of a fascinating skype conversation between Elizabeth Namgyel and Erric. Elizabeth describes compassion as a radical expansion of self. Then she gives some tips about how we can begin to cultivate this expanded sense of self.
There’s a standard American joke that goes, “A man walks into a bar…” and proceeds to have a short story ending with a punch-line. To get this post started right, I’ll finish the joke:
In this video, Sogyal Rinpoche explains that we are usually lost in the appearance of mind, our thoughts and emotions, instead of recognizing the essence or nature of mind.
(Because this site addresses compassion and how its presence can be invoked through the practice of meditation, I thought I'd come at the discussion from a different angle. Please let me and other readers on this site know what you think. Enjoy!)