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From Shaila Catherine's Focused and Fearless:

 

"Spiritual practitioners thrive in unpredictable conditions, testing and refining the inner qualities of heart and mind. Every situation becomes an opportunity to abandon judgement and opinions and to simply give complete attention to what is. Situations of inconvenience are terrific areas to discover, test, or develop your equanimity. How gracefully can you compromise in a negotiation? Does your mind remain balanced when you have to drive around the block three times to find a parking space? Are you at ease waiting for a flight that's six hours delayed? These inconveniences are opportunities to develop equanimity. Rather than shift the blame onto an institution, system, or person, one can develop the capacity to opt to rest within the experience of inconvenience."

 

Seems a life-long practice for me.

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40 minutes ago, Joe said:

Whats wrong with blaming those responsible? 

 

It’s more about your mental state, let’s say, when someone wrongs you.

 

If you can think of something someone did and you are still pissed off about it. It is you that is suffering. Blaming the others person won’t help you, holding on to that hurt won’t help you. Yes, what they did may have been wrong but equanimity is about letting go of the hurt within.

 

it doesn’t make what they did any less wrong. It just means you no longer suffer from it.

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2 hours ago, Joe said:

Whats wrong with blaming those responsible? 

 

For me, it's a question of whether you are holding onto the blame, if you are fanning your own emotional involvement. Story.

 

Years back I got EXTREMELY angry at someone. I mean RAVING! Getting really angry was, and is, extremely rare for me, but I went on with this for a couple hours. I was actually enjoying the surging righteous anger, and kept reliving the triggering situations.  Then I got a grip and asked myself if I really wanted to spend the day like that... which I didn't, and I did my best just let it go, as I didn't like what my anger was doing to ME. So I let it go.

For some days after that, maybe even a couple weeks, I noticed that I seemed to be attracting angry people. I mostly noticed it driving. That was _really_ unusual for me, and I was puzzled. I finally realized that even though I had let go of the anger consciously, it was still in my field and attracting more of the same, big time.  It took quite awhile for that field effect to dissipate, just because I let it build so big.

 

So.. if you are holding onto blame, if you go through life blaming what's happening to you on others, I posit that you will find more and more to blame others for, and attract more blame yourself. It's just a theory... but Trish's quote on equanimity strikes me as being extremely wise advice and useful practice for having a balanced inner life.

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5 hours ago, Joe said:

Whats wrong with blaming those responsible? 

 

Really nothing. It's more about personal goals - do you want to be 'right', whatever that is, or do you want to be peaceful in a world where everything, including right and wrong, are wholly subject to perspective.

 

41 minutes ago, Zwerver said:

The solution probably lies in practising some kind of middle way: you still react appropriately to situations, but you no longer let them ruin your general mood. I am not there yet, and probably never will.

 

Yes, being fully present in each moment without attachment or aversion.

 

Thanks for all the responses  :)

 

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1 hour ago, Trish said:

 

Really nothing. It's more about personal goals - do you want to be 'right', whatever that is, or do you want to be peaceful in a world where everything, including right and wrong, are wholly subject to perspective.

 

 

Yes, being fully present in each moment without attachment or aversion.

 

Thanks for all the responses  :)

 

Yes I do want to be right , being right , is having an accurate mental model of what is true.

If one has an inaccurate mental model ,they are cannot be  'in the present',

For instance, if you are dwelling on past bad experiences with a parent  , when you are having tea in the library as an adult  ,,

that would be wrong , and not 'living in the moment' , wouldn't it?  

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Being right and feeling a need to demonstrate that you are right are not the same thing.

 

Assigning blame can be constructive. For example to demonstrate that someone is untrustworthy and thus to be avoided. However, assigning blame can also be destructive. For example blaming "bad traffic" when you are late for an appointment.

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10 minutes ago, Jason said:

Being right and feeling a need to demonstrate that you are right are not the same thing.

 

Assigning blame can be constructive. For example to demonstrate that someone is untrustworthy and thus to be avoided. However, assigning blame can also be destructive. For example blaming "bad traffic" when you are late for an appointment.

I live in florida , the traffic iS bad .

;)

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3 minutes ago, Joe said:

Just kidding.. But seriously,:  If I am speaking to a person who feels no need to be right , then what harm is there in informing them that they are wrong ? 

 

If a person feels no need to be right then what benefit is there?

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31 minutes ago, Jason said:

 

If a person feels no need to be right then what benefit is there?

Thats avoiding the question a little , but , the benefit is that one can only be living in the present simultaneous with being right. 

Buddha reportedly went around informing people , therefore he felt there was a need to set them straight , for their own benefit. 

Right ? 

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19 minutes ago, Joe said:

Thats avoiding the question a little , but , the benefit is that one can only be living in the present simultaneous with being right. 

Buddha reportedly went around informing people , therefore he felt there was a need to set them straight , for their own benefit. 

Right ? 

 

Ah... so the real question is when does informing someone that they are wrong stop being a service to them? As long as the other is listening to you then they have capacity to learn from you, but the moment the other feels they are being criticized or attacked by you then the learning stops and the argument begins.

 

This is a serious issue. We see this play out all around us. One person feels they are speaking truth -- indeed they may be doing exactly that -- but the other person just hears an incoming attack so they assume defensive positions. In these times, equanimity demands that we see the truth of the situation and respond accordingly, which may mean simply walking away.

 

 

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10 hours ago, Trish said:

These inconveniences are opportunities to develop equanimity.

 

I appreciate all of these little reminders of my level of attainment (low), as it allows my head to not get too big.


As for developing equanimity in the midst of them - that's still a work in progress. Sometimes, when things are working well for me, it's more of a transcendence than an acceptance...less about me doing something to remedy the situation, and more of a spontaneous liberation.

 

...but most often, I'm just stuck behind slow drivers, with people who put on their brakes far too late in my rear view, and I'm super frustrated. Honesty is the best policy.

Edited by Aetherous
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15 minutes ago, Jason said:

 

Ah... so the real question is when does informing someone that they are wrong stop being a service to them? As long as the other is listening to you then they have capacity to learn from you, but the moment the other feels they are being criticized or attacked by you then the learning stops and the argument begins.

 

This is a serious issue. We see this play out all around us. One person feels they are speaking truth -- indeed they may be doing exactly that -- but the other person just hears an incoming attack so they assume defensive positions. In these times, equanimity demands that we see the truth of the situation and respond accordingly, which may mean simply walking away.

 

 

Well said , I leave that standing undisturbed. :) 

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12 hours ago, Trish said:

drive around the block three times to find a parking space?

 

This is almost a guaranteed example of me getting caught up and frustrated :D

 

Lord help me, I'll pay the $50 to park in a garage...

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